I failed.

Today I was told that it was decided not to hire me into Google.

I was an intern in Google for almost 3 years, working between 2 and 3 days a week while studying for my degree. The first of those years I spent as a Field Technician, taking care of both Israeli offices' technical needs, and the rest as a software engineering intern, during which time I had the pleasure of working on Google+ and building systems that allow a lot of the magic here to happen.

Overall being an intern at Google was great, even though I wasn't hired eventually. I earned a ridiculous amount of real experience working with high scale systems, and having real world context throughout my studies helped me in almost every single class I took.

It is a little sad for me that for the time being I won't work for Google (and very sad for me that I won't keep working directly on Google+ which I completely fell in love with), but I'm not completely bummed out:

- First of all, Google is well known for being overly restrictive in its hiring process, and choosing to error on the side of not hiring - this means that I can apply again after 6 months. and get a clean slate (One guy from Google Haifa was rejected after his internship, later reapplied and was accepted, and is today a Technical Lead for his team).

- Second, my options are now wide open again. I never liked being a software specialist, and I always felt just as comfortable writing a backend as I did writing a Chrome extension. In Google I got to work on tools, and testing systems, and data compilers, and frontend server code, and managed to sneak in some frontend HTML code, and kept pushing myself to never stay in my comfort zone. Over time, my managers learned that they can give me tasks from anywhere up and down the stack and I'll get it done.
Now, outside Google, I can push myself into more interesting technologies, play a little with mobile development, or cross-platform HTML5, or Native Client, or Node.js server development, or Go and Dart (which ironically I would probably not be able to use inside Google for the next few years was I hired).

- Third, I can consider going back to writing about technology, which was what I did best before I started my Computer Sciences studies. Some will claim otherwise, but in practice it is impossible to blog about technology while working at Google - not because of restrictions from Google's side, but because people at general find it hard to accept that you're writing your own opinions, and will attribute anything you say to the fact that you're employed by Google.

- Fourth, there's a story I always come back to when failure strikes hard - In 2007, before I considered studying Computer Sciences, I was hired by an outsourcing firm to work at Intel as a server maintainer. I signed the contract, had champagne with the CEO of the firm, and waited a month to receive details about my first day at work, which never came. As it turned out, Intel decided not to use my services. I was bummed and felt really bad about it, but in hindsight I wouldn't have made it into Google if I had that job at Intel. So I now consider not being hired at Intel as a very lucky event in my life.

Yesterday I celebrated my 27th birthday. Here's to a great year with many successes, and just the right amount of failures.

Image credit: failgif.com
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