September 11, 2007

Six years is a long time

A generation ago it was not unusual to spend your entire career, 30 plus years, at a single company. Maybe it’s Silicon Valley, or the gaming industry, or generation X & Y, but six years has become a long time to spend at a single job. It’s strange to think I’ve been an employee at Electronic Arts for a longer period of time than I was in high school. But all good things must come to an end and today is my last day down in Redwood Shores. As for me, I’ve decided there are some new challenges and growth opportunities for me outside my cube. I’ll be doing a number of freelance design projects, but for most of the next year I will be traveling in order to spend more time in the ocean and on the mountains.

Looking back six years ago I don’t think I could have chosen another company where I would have learned as much – with the obvious exception of Google, I mean with all those stock options I could have paid Stephen Hawking to be my tutor! Very few companies combine technology and art like EA and I feel privileged to have participated in a number of great projects that helped me become a better designer. In thinking over my time at EA there are a few esoteric numbers that come to mind:

  • 3 – Holiday parties attended (I lost interest once they started having them on campus)
  • 4 – Significant websites worked on (who knows how many small ones)
  • 5 – Computers (1 laptop & 4 desktop – only 1 mac…boo)
  • 6 – Years as an EA employee
  • 7 – Game titles worked on (some shipped and some not)
  • 14 – Cubes I’ve worked in (that I can remember)
  • 16 – Managers I’ve had (some more than once)
  • 24 – Points in stock value that ERTS has gained (of which I’m not sure I deserve any credit)
  • 1400 – Approximate number of 40 mile round trips between my home in San Francisco and EA’s campus in Redwood City

As everyone points out in their goodbye emails from EA the people are what makes it a great company. I can only hope I have the opportunity to work with some of them in the future. I will truly miss talking, drinking (coffee & booze), and working with them all. In that spirit I spent my second to last day photographing the people and sights of EA – just so I won’t ever forget.

Thanks Robin for the inspiration for this photo montage.

DEAR ABE, You're a jerk.  {heart} Morgan P.S. I didn't really like you anyway.Morgan salutes the last day
Simon & Sammi at the daily standupJosh looking pensive....I think he knows he's got a big UI task ahead of him.
Who's ever heard of a rhinestone mouse?Brombizzlie!
Lawrence Mai - great concept artTrudy Muller, you're back at EA?
Lunch with a former EA employee, Renee, at SpassoRenee Fisher looks relaxed after being off work for a couple of months
Lunch time soccer gameHi Ashley!
Strongbad holding down the Homestarrunner crewMore Strongbad
Robin Hunicke and KayeDom Regan, let's get a surf in this fall
Yukiko Arikawa is very camera shyThe best I could do for a photo of Yukiko Arikawa was half her face
Lincoln Hershberger, what's going on?Lincoln Hershberger and the Lion face.
FesalDaily Starbucks trips
Sammi Kim my Starbucks partnerMore Sammi Kim
Abraham Wallin enjoying a break for ChaiAbraham Wallin reflecting on a fun day
Rich Bologna always taking time out for a cig breakRich Bologna making faces
More RichWhat up Te Wilson!
Robin Hunicke thanks for letting me use you're lensRobin Hunicke has great ideas, thats why she designs
Chuck Beaver living it up at EA.Gorman with a great face
Ok, That's a Lie.  You'll be missed.