George studied computer science at Victoria University of Wellington in the mid-nineties and now works for Google.
George studied computer science at the University in the mid-nineties and now works for Google. We asked him a few questions about his career and life in the US.
What did you enjoy about the course then?
Looking back, I think the thing I enjoyed most was the people, both staff and students. They were engaged and approachable and conveyed an enthusiasm for the subject that was contagious. The student body reflected that and as a result it was a fun place to be.
What does a computing engineer for Google actually do?
I work in Site Reliability Engineering, where we are responsible for keeping Google services up, available and fast. We handle all aspects of this, from provisioning, monitoring and automation to troubleshooting, planning and occasionally crisis management—it’s very large scale distributed systems administration.
Working at very (very) large scale presents a whole different range of challenges—things that work with dozens of machines do not work so well when there are a lot more than that.
What’s it like to work for Google?
It is a lot of fun. The people here are smart and motivated, and the work is challenging. We have new problems to solve, working on the bleeding edge of the technology curve.
What’s the best food in America?
Definitely southern style barbeque!
What would you say to someone thinking of getting into engineering or computer science?
The Internet may have changed the world, but it is not done yet. The way we think about computers, data and communications is changing and computer scientists and engineers are on the forefront of the wave. Go for it.