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A stone’s throw from the Tesla and Mc Laren car dealerships of Palo Alto, Los Altos has an inordinate, almost absurd number of services that cater to children.
A toy store is stuffed with puffy glitter stickers and neon science projects for kid geniuses.
Among the foremost examples of Silicon Valley’s data-driven pragmatism and optimism, they fervently believe the world can be a better place and have devoted themselves to making it so through their many interlocking ventures and family foundation, to which they contributed 7 million last year.
But romantic scandals can happen even to those for whom “good fortune arrives in fairytale-like flurries,” as once wrote. Last year Brin, a handsome, compact man with a toned physique, an enviable head of hair, and sparkling brown eyes, left the family’s spread on a million Los Altos lot while dating a Google employee in her mid-20s, Amanda Rosenberg—who, in turn, ditched her boyfriend, then a prized executive at Google’s Android arm, for Brin.
Some people even called them “twins”: they’re the same age (40), went to elite universities, and are fanatical about the outdoors, yoga, and athletics.
Brin likes springboard diving; Wojcicki rides an elliptical bike to work.
When Google, in a rare misstep, censored its results in China, Brin, whose parents’ experience attuned him to the abuses of totalitarian regimes, took the leading role in pulling the company out of the country.
The corporate culture that you’ve likely heard about at Google—the lack of a dress code, the free sushi, the pets at work, the free Pilates sessions—was all part of the founders’ mission to create a benevolent workplace.
“He said, ‘Larry, you do the hard, prestigious work, and at the end of your life you’ll do the fun stuff, like Bill Gates.
A farm-to-fork restaurant includes a nanny-staffed room for children so you can enjoy your meal in peace, and a 5,000-square-foot kids’ science center with an electromagnetic ring toss and an exhibition about the way the wind moves on the ocean opened its doors in December.
This childhood fantasia didn’t happen by accident: some of it is the result of urban-design investments made by Sergey Brin, the co-founder of Google, and his wife, Anne Wojcicki (pronounced Wo--skee), the most important couple in town—and perhaps the most prominent young couple in Silicon Valley.
The story behind Google co-founder Sergey Brin’s liaison with Google Glass marketing manager Amanda Rosenberg—and his split from his wife, genetic-testing entrepreneur Anne Wojcicki— has a decidedly futuristic edge.
But, as Vanessa Grigoriadis reports, the drama leaves Silicon Valley debating emotional issues, from office romance to fear of mortality.Eventually, Google would employ 55,000 people on its 65-building campus in Mountain View, California, creating the country’s best e-mail platform (Gmail), their own browser (Chrome), a G. Google became a supremely powerful corporation, but in its DNA it remained anti-corporate.