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Joseph Smarr
Works at Google
Attended Stanford University
Lives in Half Moon Bay, CA
66,930 followers|5,039,483 views
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People
In his circles
992 people
Education
  • Stanford University
    Symbolic Systems (MS), 2002 - 2003
  • Stanford University
    Symbolic Systems, 1998 - 2002
  • University Laboratory High School
    1993 - 1998
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Relationship
Married
Story
Introduction
Engineer at Google. Opening up the Social Web.
Bragging rights
I can code circles around you. (Get it??)
Work
Occupation
Member of Technical Staff
Employment
  • Google
    Member of Technical Staff, 2010 - present
  • Plaxo
    CTO (among other things), 2002 - 2009
  • MedExpert
    2000 - 2002
  • WebEx
    1999 - 2000
  • Sigma Digital Design
    1996 - 1998
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Half Moon Bay, CA
Previously
Urbana, IL - Stanford, CA - Los Altos, CA - San Jose, CA - Stabbiano, Italy

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Joseph Smarr

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I totally share +Sam Altman's concerns that modern technology is likely to destroy jobs and concentrate wealth (unlike the Industrial Revolution). If computers/robots/AI can do more and more normal jobs, and even if there's enough shared prosperity (redistribution) to keep the pitchforks at bay, what are most people going to do in the future? I haven't heard a convincing scenario yet...have you?
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Fix robots
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Joseph Smarr

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Oh man, +John McCrea dug up so much great nostalgic material from SGI's original WebFORCE launch 20 years ago today. I love reading the marketing material, which had to sell the Web itself as much as SGI's tools for doing more with it. :)
[20 Years Ago, Part 15. Other options: prior post or start at the beginning.] Somehow, against the odds, it all came together. WebFORCE went from funded project to new product line, ready for launc...
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I so miss SGI. 
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Joseph Smarr

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With our powers combined... :) This makes me very happy for the future!
Google may be in the final stages of investing in SpaceX, a move that would bolster SpaceX's emerging satellite business, which would help Google expand access to the internet around the world.
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Nice
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Joseph Smarr

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A depressing but compelling analysis--with a lot of data I hadn't seen before--of the forces underlying the current partisan dysfunction in DC. Co-written by my friend +Sam Abrams, who's been "putting the science in social science" since we were in college together. :)
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Joseph Smarr

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Super cool. Having talked with +Brit Morin and +Dave Morin before about planning for life with babies, I knew they wouldn't let this opportunity go to waste design-wise. But I'm still really impressed at how happy the energy is in the room, and how it manages to exude high design without the cold austerity that too-often comes along for the ride. Congrats!
 
Finally got a few pics of Ansel Morin's DIY nursery.
Take a photo tour of Brit Morin's brand new nursery, featuring nearly a dozen DIY moments.
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Thanks so much Joseph :)
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Joseph Smarr

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In the annals of "home-for-the-holidays tech support", TIL that the Dell 2408WFP monitor does not function as a powered USB hub. Don't let the multiple USB ports and attached power cord fool you! Don't also be fooled by the fact that your computer makes that little "ba-dunk!" connection noise every time you plug or unplug something. Turns out they don't get enough power so they don't communicate properly, but using a separate USB hub with its own AC adapter solves the problem.

That's a few hours of my life I won't get back, but a) +Google Express overnighting me a replacement hub eases the pain, and b) the attached comment from a guy who did a major Dell rollout and noticed the same issue warms my heart a bit.

Also: to those of you (myself included) who work in technology: YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM! When corners are cut and software/hardware doesn't "just work" like this, it's confusing and frustrating and turns people off from technology, when really it's not their fault, it's yours/ours. :)
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That sucks. I'm getting an lg 34" ultrawide in a few months; partly because it functions as a Thundetbolt hub. Hoping LG is a little more on the money.
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Joseph Smarr

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Ok this whole The Interview situation just went from humorous to concerning. If NK really has the power to shut down a comedic US theatrical release, or if they don't but anonymous threats made it happen anyway, neither situation bodes well for the future...thoughts?
American intelligence officials have concluded that the government of Kim Jong-un was “centrally involved” in the attacks on the film company’s computers.
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Joseph Smarr

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Let me join the chorus of people praising How We Got to Now, a fun and thought provoking look at history through the lens of individual technological quests like controlling temperature, sound, and light. Steven Johnson makes the case that technological breakthroughs usually come not from solitary geniuses but from a network of related people and ideas, and that their implications are often much wider, more profound, and less predictable than anyone thinks at the time. Good stuff!
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Joseph Smarr

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Over the past several days, lots of people have reached out to me and other early +Plaxo Inc employees in shock over the headlines that a so-called "co-founder" was arrested for murder. The truth is, Minh never worked at Plaxo and I've never met or corresponded with him. +John McCrea finally decided to set the record straight on this sad and bizarre situation.
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This is undoubtedly one of the most exciting things happening inside Google right now. In particular, I'm struck by how many of the people I studied AI with back in the day are once again giddy with optimism that we've broken out of the old machine learning plateau and are on the verge of yet more profound breakthroughs.
Inside Google’s massive effort in Deep Learning, which could make already-smart search into scary-smart search
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+Christopher Lamb The problem is there's so many complicit users already. Google is an excellent psychological manipulator, and people don't notice the effect. "Reality Distortion Field" was the phrase used to refer to Apple's similar talent.

But then, Apple didn't also have a giant predictive computer system designed to tell you what to do next. Apple was content just to convince you each successive product they came up with had to be bought.
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Joseph Smarr

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Drink local! :) Tom Collins featuring Purissima Vodka from the newly opened Half Moon Bay Distillery and home-grown lemons.
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It's good, which is to say unobjectionable (this is Vodka, after all). Smooth, nice flavor, nothing harsh or medicinal on the finish. And it's awesome to drink a vodka made by people I know in a distillery I've visited that's just minutes from my house. :)
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Whoa, rock on. I feel it will be my patriotic duty to Chromecast this today. :)
 
I'm so gonna watch this. Actually liked the trailer and I hate most comedies.
Also: Yaihh, Google!
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okay
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One of my favorite spots to get a great latte in Cambridge, esp. near Kendall Square. Service is quick and the baristas know what they're doing.
Public - 11 months ago
reviewed 11 months ago
Amazing chocolate, yummy pastries and hot chocolate, and so cool to see the factory humming right next to the cafe seating.
Public - 11 months ago
reviewed 11 months ago
Wonderful little gourmet artisan coffee shop. Best coffee and espresso drinks around, with friendly and passionate service to match. We come here every morning when we're staying in Wailea, and we look forward to it each time. They source and roast their own beans, and the care they take in brewing and presenting their drinks reminds me of the best places I've been to in San Francisco. They also sell bags of some of the best quality 100% Kona Coffee you can find anywhere (which they can also brew for you in a French Press). Highly recommended for anyone who loves great coffee or lattes.
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Food: ExcellentDecor: Very GoodService: Excellent
Public - 2 years ago
reviewed 2 years ago
96 reviews
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Yum! Food was great, service was helpful and prompt, and the space is beautiful. Definitely a great choice if you're near The Fillmore!
Food: Very GoodDecor: Very GoodService: Very Good
Public - 2 years ago
reviewed 2 years ago
K&L is amazing if you're into wine (or spirits). They have a great selection of wines (both domestic an international, esp. French) that they've hand-picked and in many cases directly imported, and their staff (and website) are super helpful too. I buy a ton of stuff from them, and I don't know of any other place that does what they do. Highly recommended!
Quality: ExcellentAppeal: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - 2 years ago
reviewed 2 years ago