Friday 19 December 2014

The woman who broke through the Google Glass ceiling . . .

A PR woman who went to the same school as Kate Middleton is now dating the firm's founder.

Love triangle: Amanda Rosenberg
Hugo Barra, a former executive at Google
The search engine's co-founder Sergey Brin

She arrived in Silicon Valley as a junior public-relations woman. Now she is at the centre of an extraordinary love triangle at the top of Google involving the search engine's co-founder Sergey Brin.

With her quirky sense of humour and visible social- media presence, Amanda Rosenberg has become a celebrity overnight in California after being named as Brin's girlfriend.

Brin (40) is now reported to have separated from his wife of six years, Anne Wojcicki, who is herself a powerful figure in the tech world. There is no suggestion that Rosenberg was involved with the Google boss before the split.

Rosenberg was also linked romantically to another senior Google executive, Hugo Barra, who recently quit the company and moved to China.

All over Silicon Valley, geeks have been frantically Googling Amanda Rosenberg, the self-proclaimed "Chew" (Chinese Jew) who grew up in England and went to the same school as Kate Middleton.

The 27-year-old seems to have landed on her feet in San Francisco after a tricky start.

Women hoping for romance in California's male-dominated tech industry are said to find the search somewhat erratic.

There is a saying about relationships with the computer eggheads: "The odds are good, but the goods are odd."

On the other hand, some argue that Google's workplace is the ideal place to kindle office love affairs.

Richard Brandt, author of The Google Guys, has said in an interview that relationships were inevitable: "They all work so closely together. The company is set up so that people practically live there. You can get all your meals, do your laundry – they even have places to have a nap. It's very intense."

Ms Rosenberg attended the posh English fee-paying school Marlborough, where she was a contemporary of Pippa Middleton and Princess Beatrice.

In an online profile, she writes: "I'm part of the master race that is the Chinese Jew, or Chew, if you will. Born in Hong Kong, but bred in the UK. A misanthrope."

Having found a job with Google in London she applied for a transfer to San Francisco and moved in 2011.

In a posting on a friend's blog she offers tips to those arriving in a strange city.

"Go out, introduce yourself and have awkward conversations, because it's better than no conversations."

She said there could be lonely days at the start and she described having her lunch in the toilet because no one talked to her.

All that seemed to change when she became the marketing manager of Google Glass, the company's heavily hyped and somewhat annoying computerised spectacles gadget.

Irish Independent

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