Death by Coffee. Don't let it happen to you.

1 AM August 15, 2007

Instant coffee should come with a health warning, and a special number to call in case you accidentally get some in your mouth. I found this out when I asked on Twitter, “is there enough caffeine in one jar of coffee to kill me?”. As is often the way with the lazyweb, my friends were only too eager to help:

andy47: @alang: Only one way to find out

carlfish: @alang: According to Wikipedia, the LD50 of caffeine in humans is approx. 150–200mg per kg of body mass, or between 80 and 100 cups of coffee.

tgchen: @alang: only 100 cups…..go for broke.

benaskins: @alang: only one way to find out

kazaskins: @alang – using a dessert spoon or a tea spoon? One would be a slower death than the other.

carlfish: @alang: (This used to be an FAQ on alt.sysadmin.recovery)

josephgrossberg: Alan: Depends on your body weight and liver.

So there you have it. Eat a large jar of Moccona and you’re likely to die of a heart attack.

Thanks to Charles and Joe for the useful information. Thanks to everyone else for your kind thoughts. I hope I can repay you some day.

PS: Here’s a picture from Wikipedia, showing why caffeine is bad for spiders.

By alang | # | Comments (1)
(Posted to Tall Tales and Stuff)

Working at Google

2 PM August 14, 2007

Friends often ask what it’s like working for Google.

It’s great.

You might have heard about the employee perks, but I think the two best things are the people, and the work.

  • Quality co-workers. Most of the engineering staff have done something exceptional, like founding a successful startup, earning a PhD or winning an international programming competition. Some of them have done two of these. Regardless of their background, they’re all smart and they can all code. I never have to explain myself twice (except when I’ve made a mistake and my co-workers are patiently waiting for
    me to correct myself). I’ve worked at a lot of places that say they hire the best, but Google mean it. Our previous receptionist had a law degree.
  • Good projects. Right now, I’m in a team of three engineers, working on a new GMail feature. If we do it well, millions of people will be using our software. That’s the kind of thing that excites me.

I’m planning on staying for a while.

By alang | # | Comments (1)
(Posted to Stuff and Software Development)


12 PM August 13, 2007

A big hello to everyone out there still subscribed. I’m feeling the need to blog again.

The main reason for the big silence this year is that my new job. I started at Google in January, and they’ve kept my brain full to the brim. By the time I get home, all I’ve been wanting to do is read a book or play Wii. I’m most of the way through Iain M Bank’s science fiction works, and somewhere past halfway through Twilight Princess.

Anyway, to get back in the swing of blogging, I’m planning to write a post a day for the next week. See you tomorrow :)

By alang | # | Comments (1)
(Posted to Stuff and Software Development)
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