Well, the first week is over. I had orientation, seminars, admin, and in the end I got some bugs and even a whole feature assigned to me. All that remains now is for me to be given access to the source tree, set up my build environment, and off I go. Exchange provides you with a really great set of tools to simplify tracking bugs, comparing sources, and a host of other things to make your life as an engineer that much simpler.
Best things so far: The coffee and endless free soda water on tap; the cafeteria; the tools; people are very friendly and supportive; the incredible speed and efficiency with which everything gets done. People enjoy working here and take it seriously.
Worst things so far: The acronyms (no-one calls a thing by its name here – even ‘permissions’ becomes ‘perms’; the vague sense of panic from knowing there is a mountain to climb, and you need to be at the top by Thanksgiving; the unbelievable amount of emails I get (already creeping towards three digits a day; many are things like build reports and test results, so you can ignore them if you know they don’t apply to you).
We had an interesting Friday. Fridays at 4pm is a tradition known as ‘MAPI beers’ where free beers, sodas and snacks are rolled out in the foyer of the building for everyone to take a weekend break. This particular Friday however, there was a farewell party for one of the Exchange bigwigs (and a hello to the new guy), so there was tons of mexican food, salads, booze (including several five liter bottles of Johnny Walker!) and a huge pyramid of mini cupcakes:
Week 2 (this coming week) should be far more mundane. With any luck, I will be playing with the source code and starting to close some of those bugs.