The Silicon Valley tour, part 1: Seedcamp America Trip visiting the Googleplex


When I decided to travel to San Francisco and Silicon Valley, I didn't expect things will be happening so fast. But thanks to Andraž from Zemanta, I managed to do two awesome things already on the first day after I've arrived - visit Google's headquarters in Mountain View and talk with the Seedcamp teams, currently on their tour of the United States. They came here to present their projects to potential investors, and Google was nice enough to accommodate one of the mentoring sessions in the Googleplex.

The Googleplex experience

Googleplex is huge, it seems that there's a whole town that exists only because of Google. When you get here, you really get the idea about the size of the corporation - it's a corporation by all of its meaning. Infinite buildings and office for various Google products, hundreds of people going back and forth.

What was said about Google is still true. You do want to work there. The place looks great and there's a feeling of extreme brain power everywhere you look. We got fed for free and even met Žiga, who is one of the few Slovenians working for Google. He's been doing it for a few years now, working on Google search, and he says he loves it. Who wouldn't?

Googleplex park and restaurant

Google's park and restaurant, located in the 1950 Mountain View building

Googleplex cafeteria and chill-out zone

Cafeteria and chill-out zone inside

Googleplex slide main lobby

The slide in the main lobby - sadly out of order. The screen displays Google search queries.

The Seedcamp experience

The mentoring sessions for Seedcamp teams took place in the afternoon in one of the buildings (Mountain View 1950 to be exact), where the companies currently in the Seedcamp program presented their solutions. I was honored to be one of the mentors, trying to help the projects with my experience in enterprise IT, business intelligence and Twitter integrations. Hopefully I was able to give the teams I was associated with some decent feedback. Here is the list of all 19 Seedcamp teams on the tour (including from Slovenia), and these are the six I managed to get to know a bit more:

  • Zingl, a dating service that uses the social, interest and location graphs to match people
  • 24symbols, a solution for e-books based on a subscription model
  • AppExtras, a plugin for mobile apps that allows publishers to promote other apps
  • archivme, a service for managing invoices and other business documents in the cloud
  • Bilbus, which works as a broker between businesses and lenders
  • blossom, a project management tool for lean companies

Pretty much all of these 19 companies managed to create some very impressive business models and innovative new services.

Seedcamp presentations

Alex presenting, a location-based conquering game

Seedcamp mentoring sessions

Mentoring sessions happened in various rooms

The final party

A bit of food and drinks after an exhausting day

What now?

So far, so good. The Seedcamp experience in the Googleplex was amazing, and I learned more in one day than I did before in months. I truly hope these teams will be able to get what they came looking for, and I hope I will too. I just need to find out what that is, because I'm not even sure anymore.

Check out the complete The Silicon Valley tour series.

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written 4.3.2012 3:05 CET on chronolog
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