Friday was an awesome day. We began with a visit to Citizen Space where we met Tara Hunt and Cathy Brooks. Tara described the concept of "Whuffie" to us which will be further explained in her upcoming book. Cathy talked about her career in the valley and here experiences at seesmic. Its great to hear from Valley veterans, I could barely keep up with them as I was checking out all the cool websites and web services they use.
We left Citizen Space and headed over the bay bridge to Emmeryville, home to Pixar Animation Studios. Yes! I know I was like a kid again getting the tour of the studio and seeing the life size models from Cars and Wall-E. I had my picture taken with Bruce from Finding Nemo, we got a sneak preview of an upcoming Pixar short, and lunch in the cafeteria. Its amazing to see how much of the architecture and work environment at Pixar is aimed at helping people to be creative. I'm so grateful that we got to see Google, Apple, and Pixar relatively close together, to appreciate the differences and similarities between these three companies.
After the Pixar tour, lunch, and retail stop for Pixar shirts etc. we had a group picture taken with the Luxo lamp.
As an added bonus to the day we visited MobiTV, Daniels cousin, Alan Moskowitz, works in the office of the CTO there and oh-by-the-way was one of the founders of Tivo. We met with Alan in their glass lined conference room with a view of the golden gate bridge. Alan gave a great presentation on innovation, entrepreneurship, and life in a startup company.
After all of the above we drove back to Union Square in downtown San Francisco where Stephanie had organized a happy hour for her friends. This was a chance for the students to meet some additional technology people in an informal setting. After hanging around the happy hour for an hour or so we set off to find some dinner at more student friendly prices. Yes, downtown San Francisco has a slightly different price point on drinks and dinner than downtown Decorah! It is all part of the experience and the students experience it with good humor.
Well, this is a lot so I'll continue to catch up in another post.