Got up early, went for a nice bike ride and then worked for a few hours. Then we had to head into Seattle to go to Bellevue to the Apple store and pick up an iMac. A friend bought it 1.5 years ago and it died (apparently due to a power surge one night) and it cost him $500 to fix it. So he said I could have it if I paid for the repair. Duh! That’s half-off even a used one and this one just got a brand new motherboard! He even saved the box and left the protective stickers on it.

We also stopped at his office. This was the first time I’ve been back to Microsoft since I left in ‘99. Microsoft is a weird place – everything looks exactly the same everywhere you go. The doors in all the buildings are identical, the offices, the desks, the blinds, etc. The lobbies look slightly different and there’s different artwork on the walls, but it’s so sterile and, well, bland. I felt like I never left yet I’d never been in this building before. I wonder if there’s subliminal sounds piped through the buildings (“you are happy… you like it here…. you are the smartest… you are changing the world….”). It felt better to get back in our dirty car.