Monkeys, Fruit Juice, and Google Fever

When I read this fascinating Gary Rivlin piece on the upward angst of so many Valley entrepreneurs, it felt vaguely surreal, like I was reading the treatment for a technology-centric cross between Grease and Saturday Night Fever. Before getting to that, I was fond of Marc Andreessen’s apt metaphor for the behavior of digerati in the presence of Larry and Sergey of Google fame:

Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the billionaire co-founders of Google, were [at the party], so [Andreessen] was able to amuse himself by watching the valley’s newest kings as they met their public.
The scene made him think of a study by a Duke University professor that has long fascinated him: monkeys were willing to forego substantial amounts of fruit juice (”That’s like crack cocaine to monkeys,” according to Andreessen) just to stare at a picture of one of their brood’s alpha monkeys. ”There was this mob effect around Larry and Sergey,” Andreessen recalled when we met for a late breakfast one morning at his favorite hangout in a strip mall near his Palo Alto office. ”The pair would try to move, but the crowd just surged with them.

Anyway, to return to the Grease/Fever thing, all these wailing wannabe-wealthier coders give me this mental image of the “Grease Lightning” scene from Grease, albeit with coders replacing the dancing mechanics:

Asynchronous Javascript plus XML
Why this code is automatic
It’s systematic
It’s hydromatic
Why it’s asynchronous javascript plus XML (Ajax)
We’ll get some xmlhttprequest and some DOM, oh yeah
(Keep talking whoa keep talking)
Client-side graphics and whizzy interface oh yeah
(I’ll get the money I’ll kill to get the money)
With a decent datastore they’ll be waiting at the door
You know that ain’t no shit we’ll be getting lots of tit
In asynchronous javascript plus XML
Code, code, code, code, code, code, code, code, code


  1. Marc who?

  2. Now, now, be nice.

  3. That nyt link brought a tear to my eye…it made me wanna ride my scooter into the other room, grab a diet coke, and get back to coding BUT I am more mature now so I am just gonna walk.
    Oh Please Let Us Have One More Bubble!!!! Hallelujah!