An exploration of the Google way of working - free massages and dance classes for all. Plus, the latest ways to get on-demand internet content and more on your telly.
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boxing, basketball, beach volleyball and wrestling. Now it is
time for Click. Another busy day at the office. Meditation balls, just
what I needed. I am a bit thirsty. From three dance classes to
perfecting your bowling mousse, this week, Click looks at the
Google approach to working life. -- bowling mousse. Is there more to it
than meets the eye? Also, look at the latest way to get content on
your television. Also, and app to get you on song. Welcome to Click.
They say there is no such thing as a free lunch. You would do well to
ask the employees that dribbled their opinion on that one. --
employees at Google. They enjoy quality cuisine at no cost each and
every mealtime. The perks go well beyond the well-fed work force.
There is a size that links employees satisfaction to
efficiency. Google is attempting to perfect it. Sumi Das found out more.
What is this? If you said it was a crew of b-boys strutting their
stuff on the dancefloor, you are correct. If you answered a typical
day at the office for employees of the world's number one search
engine, you are also correct. This could be one of the secrets to
Google's success. Break dancing is one of 200 that Ms classes offered
every day at the company. -- one of 200 fitness classes. An unusual
benefit but employees are used to those here. Got a knot in your
back? Schedule and a sash. Looking for inspiration? -- schedule and a
sash. Get a talk from a world leader. Run out of clean underwear?
Bring your laundry to work. Need to perfect your hook shot?
Visit the bowling alley. You can even take a snooze in a cosy nap
pod. Yes please. Free gourmet meals and shuttle rides are not unheard
of in Silicon Valley. Why does good will go above and beyond? -- Google.
Now that I have been spending a bit of time here at the Googleplex,
picking up the culture, chatting with Googlers, I am picking up a
trend. Can you spot it? They are trying to work out any kind of
programme that will make Googlers happier, healthier and more
productive. We are at the forefront of making decisions and figuring
out how to have a productive workforce. Super productive. In the
last 14 years, Google has gone from two employees to over 32,000,
making it tough to preserve its nimble and Industry if -- effective
start-up days. They hire people like Jessica Wisdom. We want to
make them a happy. We want to keep them engaged in their work.
Research shows that when people are happy, they are more engaged in
their work and more productive. Giggle does not subscribe to
typical HR philosophies. This is the country queues data mining
strategies created a multi-billion dollar business. Giggle knew that
providing free, flavourful meals on campus would keep workers from
straying too far from their desk. It did not just hire a chef and
asked them to start cooking, it analysed results to make an
appetising menu. It is not just what Googlers eat that is looked at,
it is how they eat. They used to only offer large plates. Then they
discovered that small plates held diners with portion control. It is
a healthier and, say it with me, more productive way. Why not toss
the large plates? Googlers want options. They tend to mourn when
they are taken away. Google has found that nudging employees in the
right direction is effective. you take a small plate, you tend to
eat less, according to research. We looked at who had taken the small
players. The percentage of people taken them increase from 21 %, to
32 %. Google has also tried to boost people's water consumption.
You can choose between tap water and bottled so does from a fridge.
It is so much easier to grab a cooler from -- a bottle from the
cooler. The monitor the consumption through the filter. We found that
people drank forties and present more water. It goes beyond cafes. -
- 48 % more water. I have got a passion for collecting the right
data, analysing it and putting it into every design. We have taken
surveys of each individual person, interviews, brainstorming. We have
even done psychological profiles over the years. Hang on,
psychological profiles? Yes. design the offices in Zurich,
employees took personality tests. Fascinating, yes? Does it sound a
little Orwellian to anyone else? looked at lots of things. That is
the bright side. Robert Sutton is a professor of management science and
engineering at Stanford University. He has followed Google closely for
about a decade. The dark side is that we always wanted to be here.
The Athens called Total institutions. -- there are things
called Total institutions. The army, mental institutions, something that
you check in and never leave. policies have been described as
liberal paternalism. He says the tech giant strides to be a force
for good. They work just as hard as Apple, Amazon, Facebook. That is
who they are competing against. You are only as good as your last
product cycle. To me, the alternative is that they do that or
they get squashed. Be nice to employees. We are a civilised
workplace. Googlers must have some gripes, right? We wanted to know.
We tracked down a former employee. Josh To spent barely five years
toiling away at the Googleplex. He found time to appreciate the Prout.
A great business decision, to keep employees happy. -- the benefits.
And the length that they went to to keep us happy, I felt they took a
lot of pride in it. As a business owner now, many people want to help
the same way that giggle does. Josh has adopted many techniques like
the females that his a venture- capital fund. There was an
unexpected downside. -- the free meals. You can get you here cut
here. You can get your oil changed here. Dry-cleaning, food, it can
breed a sense of entitlement. I am the chosen one. When your every
need is catered to, it is hard not to get spoiled. Every single Friday
you can expect to have a full spread of oysters, crab, lobster,
foie gras was definitely not a rarity. Did giggle create foie
gras-loving monsters? Possibly. It is a minor grievance. George says
his Google days were inspirational and inspiring. Why did he leave?
passion was for social enterprise as social change. My main reason
for leaving was and there was not that opportunity for me there at
that time to have those passions. common refrain among ex Googlers,
eventually they may want to invest all those long hours on their own
project. Until then, some of the perks: Way to attract, keep and
motivate some of the sharpest minds in the tech sector. If that is not
enough, perfecting the windmill might be.
Sumi Das on Google's scientific approach to a productive work posts.
Genius or a little bit creepy? -- work force. Let us know what do you
think. Next up, this week's tech news.
Maybe the dodgy music at Facebook's big stock market launch was a bad
old and. Since Mark Zuckerberg rang the stock market opening bell,
trading has been beset, first by technical problems and now
shareholders are suing the company, alleging it covered up forecasts of
a less rosy outlook for future growth. Facebook and Morgan Stanley
deny that. Google Chrome took the crown of the world's most popular
Web browser, albeit temporarily. According to data, Google Chrome,
which lodged in 2008, it performed Internet Explorer 4 nearly Bonbeach
in May for the first time ever. Mozilla's Firefox is in a strong
third place, cornering 25 % of the market. The man who designed some
of the most iconic everyday technology of the past 20 years has
been aided by Princess Anne. A rise Sir Jonathan Ive, the man behind
the look of the iPad. He says he is most excited about the project he
is working on now which, in true Apple style, he cannot reveal.
Researchers at MIT have found a solution to get in those last bits
of ketchup out of the bottle without shaking. They have come up
with a non-toxic, slippery coating that they call LiquiGlide. It is
sprayed into the inside of the bottle during manufacturing so that
any liquid, no matter how thick, just slips onto the surface. Saucy.
Over the last couple of years, there has been a lot of buzz around
the idea of the connected TV. These are TV sets that, as well as
letting you watch, debt from traditional broadcast services,
also alleges dreamed that the much anything you want from the internet.
From entire TV series these -- from entire TV series on demand...
Contrary to what you might be told, you do not need to buy a good TV to
get access to these services. There are ways of streaming content to
your existing TV. Competition in this space is hotting up. Here is
Richard Taylor with an update on the latest. Multimedia riches.
Whether it is the weather or searching for a dream home, making
escape Col are keeping fit, it is all there, vying for our attention
on a screen right in front of us. These applications are displayed
not through a smartphone but a smart television. As you would
expect, they are pretty snazzy. The present are well integrated TV
experience with a single remote control for your entire
TV off. I do not mean off back to the company I borrowed it from. I
am not fast. You do not need a connected TV to get a connected TV
experience. You need a box to plug into it. You may have one already.
X Box 360 has everything from first run movies to Facebook. Kinect, the
apps are voice controllable as well. Ex-boxer, search. The PlayStation 3
does not have the same Content Selection. -- X Box. There are some
existing services you may subscribe to. If you are with Virgin Cable
you will know about its in-built Connectivity. Sky customers are
welcome at the smart TV party. It's any time-servers has been enhanced
to include everything from catch-up TV through to entire back
catalogues of TV series. With the BBC iPlayer coming on stream in the
autumn. Getting it is as easy as connecting an Ethernet cable from
the box into the rata. Often they are not in the same room. It can
create a cabling issue. It is a problem that can be sold very
easily using one of these. It is called a home club, it carries data
around the room. You take a cable, flooded into the device, flooded
into the spare electricity socket. -- plug it in. This one has got
space for three, it supports 500 megabits per second. That should be
more than you need. In practice you will only get a fraction of that
through the cable. You can use a home club with any connected TV box.
There are a number of stand-alone offerings itching to be hooked up.
As a bonus they are controllable through smart phones and tablets as
well. Cross media bar, Media on demand, it supports a limited
number of media formats from your home network and USP. Sony would do
well to learn from western Digital whose life box can play anything
you throw at it. From the network or terror by drive. It is a solid
performer and has iOS applications. -- terabyte drive. Cupidtino is on
at all TV. Its simplicity is virtue and vice. Geeks have been hacking
it to improve functionality. At this price, really, what were you
expecting? Roku is now exporting its shares across the pond. With a
simple interface and playback intelligently optimised to your
internet speed, it consists of on demand a video and little else.
Contrast that with LG, which has taken the kitchen-sink approach to
TV apps. It is a little too clever for its own good. Can you serve up
salad recipes on a television? A nicely designed a screen for
playing back your content from other network devices. Finally, we
have talked about hooking up a TV to get the internet, how about
using your mobile phone to pick up a TV signal? This is a TV receiver
which plugs into an iPhone or iPad with live TV with the option to
record. Using a small wood antenna, reception can be hit and miss. For
a TV junkies, it is a must-have. There is no escaping it, we are not
consuming media any more, we are in danger of being consumed by it.
Richard Taylor on the new ways to get more content to your big screen.
We go to the small screen now. These things are great. You can
make phone calls on them as long as you have reception. You can get
videos on them as long as you have a decent data connection. You can
connect to the internet. You can listen to music, as long as you do
not run out of memory. You can play games on them until the run out of
batteries. With a track record like that, would you trust these to
teach you how to sing? Kate Russell will explain more in Webscape.
These things really can teach you how to sing, you just need the
right app. My Note Games is a iOS app designed for children with its
cute graphics. It is free to play and you unlock more notes and
levels as you progress. There are loads of musical instruments to
choose from, from saxophone, viola. With male and female singing voices,
you do not have to play a musical instrument to have fun with this
app. I always fancied myself a bit of a soprano. Maybe I am better off
sticking to my day job. There are plenty of games to play for free.
The option to buy more content for a few coins. You can probably make
back when you are good enough to go out busking. As Pinterest continues
to catch the imagination of the social world, there are apps among
the back office. If you cannot resist a nice-looking pie chart,
there are plenty of statistics and information about what the world is
talking about. If you include your own Pinterest on the website, you
can see how many people have been looking at you and what kinds of
posts they enjoy. Head over to this website and load up a picture to
make a funky, chopped up version that can be king from the
application. It is the last five pins that makes your cover, make
sure you pin them after you add new content. This will be less annoying
if he used them for photos from event. -- if you use. Next up, a
website with an address that is a lot more complicated than what it
does. Grndctrl.com does not have the catchiest name in the world,
but if you want to keep track of your finances, it offers simplicity
itself. As well as being a great way to keep tabs on your life
without being bogged down on endless spreadsheets, you can use
it to help you save up for something special, like a family
holiday or a new computer. Add all your in comings and outgoings,
specify the reward you are aiming for with the cast, the app will
tell you how long it will take for you to save up. Maybe I'd better
rethink the Ferrari. Microsoft's social search platform opened up
quietly, so.cl lets users build networks based on interesting
search results. It uses Microsoft's be in search engine technology. --
Bing. You have a few days left to get your entry into NASA birthday
Video contest 2012 competition. -- birthday Video contest. Watch the
videos up leaded so far on YouTube. That was Kate Russell with Webscape.
If you missed any of the websites, they are up at our website. You can
An exploration of the Google way of working - free massages and dance classes for all, but is there more to it than meets the eye? Plus, the latest ways to get on-demand internet content and more on your telly.