We don’t need no… ed-u-cation

2 Jun

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Learning is a funny concept. In this day and age, Americans are expected to complete a minimum of 13 years of school. Tens of millions of students choose to extend their education for another 4 to 11 years. We believe that an educated society is a more moral society, a more productive society, a better society. And we’re right. However, I’m here to tell you that while we learn a good amount from classes, reading, homework, and from our peers, the ultimate learning experience is jumping straight int he deep end and getting your hands dirty. That’s right, I’m talking about a job.

Last Monday, I started my internship at Apple Inc., a mobile devices company in Cupertino, CA, famous for such products as the Apple Computer, Macintosh, iPod, iTouch, iPhone, Macbooks, and most recently, the iPad. Unfortunately, it turns out that Apple is a very secretive company. I am not allowed to talk about what I’m working on or what team I’m working for. So, I will talk about everything else.

Working at Apple as a rising sophomore is daunting. I feel as though I am lightyears behind my peers in terms of knowledge. I have to ask questions all the time. Things that would take a regular employee a few minutes sometimes take me a few hours. I spend most of my time listening to conversation without the slightest notion of what is being talked about.

Each morning I return to work, I feel a tiny bit more confident than the last. I imagine by the end of the Summer, I will have learned more than I did all year at school.

It is interesting to meet all the different people working here at Apple. My roommates and I combined come from the following cities: Dallas, Austin, Pittsburgh, Hawaii, Canada, and Boston. We have a lot of different perspectives, which is really cool to experience.

Cupertino is a suburb plain and simple. Neighborhoods are ubiquitous, shopping centers, grocery stores, movie theaters, restaurants, and all that good stuff. The main difference between Cupertino and other suburbs is the quantity of tech companies in the area. It is after all located in Silicon Valley. In a walk to the grocery store I passed by Apple, HP, Symantec, and half a dozen other smaller software companies. The focus on technology in this part of the country cannot be escaped. Restaurants embrace products such as Yelp and Foursquare. Coffee shops are filled with young techies jabbering about the latest news on TechCrunch and Hacker News.

While the omni-presence of technology is awesome, it can get overwhelming after looking at a computer screen for X many hours a day. Luckily, the beach is less than an hour away, a short drive through the mountains. The city of San Francisco is 45 minutes to the north. The beautiful campus and area of Palo Alto just a short 15 minutes to the west. All in all, a great location.

As I mentioned, my last few weeks have been really busy, but I have been doing some homework on the markets. More normal posts to come the next time I get a chance to write. As they say in silicon valley, exit(0).

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One Response to “We don’t need no… ed-u-cation”

  1. beast June 16, 2010 at 8:54 PM #

    But then when you exit(0); your app crashes because it was tied to windows services.

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