These are a few articles (stories) that I've written, just to share my experiences as an Adobe employee for over a decade. I like the company, and all companies have good and bad quirks. But these are just my observations on what I found amusing or memorable about my experiences there. Definitely not to slam the company, or many good people who have worked there -- just because I sort of journal on life.
Here's a few articles on Adobe: Adobe : 14 items
Unicode, I Am A Witness -
Open Floorplans -
Inside Adobe -
Chinese Fire Drill - How not to impress HR. Of course, if they can't take a joke, then they don't impress me either.
Adobe: Snackpocalypse -
Adobe: Beer Bash - It's easy to get jaded, and kind of hard not to. But one thing that helps is trying to look through the world through baby eye's (look at things like this is your first time seeing it). Adobe has some awesome benefits, and they often rank in the top-10 places in the bay area to work... and the bay area ranks in the top of the nation, and our country is ranked pretty high as well. But like all large companies, they're constantly shifting things around, and many of those shifts aren't always for the better. Some people leaving, some going (not always voluntarily). So you get a two starkly different views of things, those of an old-timer (OT) versus the wide eyes of a new timer (NT). He's some examples of what that means.
Adobe for All -
Adobe Culture - The first thing to realize about Adobe is that it is not a single company, it is a series of acquisitions. Most of Adobe’s products were incubated outside the company: Photoshop, Illustrator, PageMaker (InDesign), DreamWeaver, Flash, Premiere, and a myriad others were all through acquisitions of outside companies and products. Other than Postscript, Fonts and Acrobat, just about everything came from somewhere else.
San Jose is 3 primary towers (and a few out-buildings), and they're building a 4th bigger tower. But figure a 150 people to a floor (x 12 floors x 3 buildings): a product is often a floor or three, with an HR floor, Legal Floor, IT floors, Finance, etc. It's pretty modularized. That means that some products decorated and even laid out their floors, their way. Kind of the same way they run their teams. SF offices have fewer and bigger floors, but you still get clustering by area. And that's just the ones that are on main campuses. If you're an acquisition that has buildings in another geography (Seattle, Salt Lake City, Austin, Denver, Boston, Minnesota, NYC, Hamburg, Romania, or one of the India Offices), you're even more "on your own".
What that means there’s no pure "Adobe culture", there’s a lot of different histories and cultures and teams, that have to woven together. And thus, anything that’s true for one team, might not be true in another. And that gets down to the tools they use, the way they code and interact, the policies they choose to follow, and what’s tolerable behavior. There are some overarching Adobe'isms and values (in theory). But generally, the VP of the product, is beholden up to the EVP of the BU, and the teams below run according to that VP's quirks/style/history.
2019 Adobe email is hard - I was changing roles in my company, so I asked IT (a) can you create a new email address so that I can leave the old one as an OOO (Out of the Office message) to tell people where to go for support on their old problems (and I'd set the OOO message on the old one). Should be easy, right? I put in the request 2 weeks before the job change:
- They said they could do that, but only by changing my entire identity. I griped saying I really only wanted a different email, but if that's the only way to do it, I was fine.
- So they were about to do it and they emailed me all the things that were going to break by doing this. I mentioned thanks and would take them on, but I really had just wanted another email address (and re-explained what I was trying to do). So they cancelled the order, and asked me to talk to another group (communications).
- The other group said that I can't just add an email address, so sent me back to the first group, which had cancelled my order. So I asked them again could they please put me back in the queue... but they didn't get my order in for days to change the ID.
- Instead of creating a new ID, they copied my old ID to my new one and instead of leaving on the OOO message, they set the old address as a forwarder -- so I not only didn't get a clean email (I had 80,000 emails that I had to clean up manually to start fresh), it was also still getting all the old roles emails, and those people weren't getting messages on where to go for support.
- I asked them to fix it (please leave an OOO message on the old account and re-explained why). They said fine, it was fixed.
- What they had done is turned on OOO message on the new account, and since the old account was forwarded, they would get the OOO message (as would all the new people).
- I asked them to fix it again, and again laid out what I was asking and why. I need an OOO message on the old account, not the new account. The old account should not be a forwarder. Just let me do my new job with a new email account. Please. They said that I should have asked for that in the first place -- I pointed out that I had in the last 7 support tries. They assured me that this time they fixed it.
- What they had done is broke the old email completely, so now it just threw an error (there was no person in Adobe with the old email address). I asked them to please fix it.
Swalwell goes to Adobe - Eric Swalwell spoke at my work. It was billed as a conversation with him about his role on some tech committees, and his experiences in congress. That sounded interesting. Instead he brought shame to my company, his district, my State, and my Country for not laughing him off of his soapbox of caustic stupidity. The guy whined about Trump, shared his retarded view on guns, and mocked an Octagarian coworker with far more accomplishments than Eric has, for not being up on Twitter (where Swalwell shit-tweets and gets rolled over by people smarter than him. Like 14 year old trolls). I went to the company gym and took a shower after watching him, and still felt dirty.
2017 Sonoma Fires - So we had a company/team offsite in Sonoma. We came up on Sunday, then woke up Monday (2017.10.08) to 8 fires all around us. I got up at 0-dark-30, and did my normal swim and it smelled like someone was using a pellet smoker. But as I was doing my laps, I could taste it, and it was sort of irritating my lungs a little. Then I went back to my room and watched the news while getting dressed... we were surrounded by fires, and they were all out of control. Time to get outta dodge... (or Sonoma).
- In 2013 (10/2), my work had a team event that included Ziplining in the Santa Cruz Redwoods (Mount Hermon Adventures). What the heck, I went, it was fun and pretty. Nice crew.