House hunting in Sydney – Part 2

Edwin

Initially, we were on our own in house hunting, and it was all new to both of us. Brendan did extensive research on interest rates, housing prices, etc. – he was taking a very cautious approach to spending such a large amount of money. Because he was tracking the numbers closely, by late last year he was well aware that the housing market was peaking and would be likely to drop 10-20% in 2022 (especially once the Reserve Bank of Australia got around to raising interest rates). We needed a house to live in ASAP, but given these market conditions we weren’t willing to be extravagant. And, as previously noted, having another half to full million to spend would not have given us many more options: there just aren’t enough houses.

House hunting in Sydney

We moved to Sydney in December, 2020. Our original plan had been to spend about two years renting while we got to know this extensive and varied city, to figure out where we’d like to live longer-term. We had plenty of savings, and calculated that when the time came to buy we should be able to afford just about anything we’d want – we’re not ostentatious people and would not be looking for a mansion. 

In the meantime, we rented a beachfront apartment with incredible views of the sea. I thought I would never tire of this, could not imagine ever wanting to leave it.

Turns out we were very wrong about… everything.

Netflix 100M Party

The Netflix 100M party in 2017 was held regionally, with the bulk of the attendees traveling in buses from all over the Bay Area to San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium (because the majority of the employees work in Los Gatos).

Guests were encouraged to dress to reflect Netflix’s expanded worldwide market – a relatively easy assignment for Brendan and me as we are both comfortable in Indian clothing and had some formalwear from our trips to India together. Many of the Indian women wore saris, and their consorts, seeing Brendan, regretted that they had dressed in western suits instead of churidar-kurta!

Netflix 50M Party

Some of the most fun tech events I have attended were two epic parties thrown by Netflix for its employees, to celebrate hitting the 50 million (in 2014) and 100 million (in 2017) customers marks. Netflix now has over 200 million customers, but alas there have been no further parties Brendan reminds me that there was a 200M party, virtually, in 2021.

The 50M party involved EVERY Netflix employee (and a date) worldwide being flown to LA for an evening themed around its then-current hits (yes, House of Cards was the biggie – another thing that has changed), featuring the stars of said shows plus a bunch of other notables.

We were not hobbing and nobbing with the balcony people, but nevertheless had fun. Just having an occasion to dress up and admire others dressed up is always fun!

You can see the video clips here.

Problematic employers in tech

Once upon a time, a company that many – especially those who worked there – felt to be nice, good, and generally on the right side of tech history was acquired by a company that many – including some who worked there – felt to be evil, rapacious, soulless, and in other ways reflective of its founder. 

Yes, I’m talking about the acquisition of Sun Microsystems by Oracle.

Many stories could be told about this acquisition, but for the purposes of this piece I will focus on the schism between those who left Oracle immediately, and those who did not.