About Here: A German in Silicon Valley (3)

Welcome back & thanks a lot for keeping up with me!

This is a new blog post about my internship in the US. I am already back in Europe, so this will be my last blog post for the next months (until I am back in the US again). I will focus on the visa process for now, which should be the most important thing for people interested in going to the US.

[read the previous post]

About Here: Visa Process


The first obstacle after being accepted for a job/internship in the US (if you don’t have a greencard/American citizenship) is the visa (surprise!). To be honest, I don’t know the procedure of getting a working visa for the European Union (where I origin from), so excuse potential hypocrisy in the following section.

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About here: A German in Silicon Valley (2)

Hey there!

Thank you for getting back to my blog about interning in Silicon Valley. This time I am writing about costs of living, mobility in California as well as about some weekend activity.

[read part 1 first]

About Here: Cost of Living

Your face when you get to know your salary for the first time…


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About here: A German in Silicon Valley (1)

My name is Fabian and I am a graduate student from Germany. Technically, I am enrolled in the International Information Systems masters program at the FAU in Southern Germany for the summer term. Actually, I took a semester off for working in Silicon Valley in the summer of 2017.
I would like to share my impressions and experiences with prospective Valley interns, students interested in working here & simply all people being interested in just another Silicon Valley report (not a big group of folks, I guess). 

What do I want to tell you?

A few years ago I read a Spiegel (offline) article about the notorious place of Silicon Valley with clear messages:

Loose money.
Crazy pioneers.
Silicon Valley eats the world (economy).

In my opinion, the obvious menacing undertone of this message can be ascribed to a (now apparently stereotypic) German attitude: angst.

But wait! I am pretty sure you just wanted to quit this page since this does sound like another
“Man, Germany simply does not understand startups/entrepreneurship/[INSERT-TERMS-THAT-THE-BUSINESS-UNDERGRADUATES-FROM-YOUR-UNIVERSITY-ARE-USING-RECENTLY]”
Let me tell you: It’s not.

Instead of doing that, I will try to tell you about the (working) life in the bay area from a subjective (obviously) but rational perspective of a young student.
Since this place (spoiler alert) actually can be a pretty cool place to live & work (terms and conditions may apply, please continue reading), I will also try to give information about the possibilities to come here for an internship or even a full time employment.

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The two downsides of REST

REST (Representational State Transfer) is a trendy design pattern for (Web-)APIs. Many developers use REST over other concepts for their application, mostly not considering the potential downsides.

When you think about implementing a REST-API, read this article first, so you consider these two essential issues that come with REST:

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Gaming: Why VR is not suited for its origin use case

How will the Virtual Reality (VR) trend continue? It is impossible to predict, but many opinion makers try to convince the tech world that it will be either the next big thing or a total failure.

Insights on VR & Gaming

Instead of making a prediction, I want to tell you about my experience with VR and its use cases – especially gaming. In 2015, I played around with the Oculus Rift for a lot of time, which lead to four essential insights on VR:

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Start Ups: What most Software Engineers do wrong

Three words: Focus on Technology.

I know that it is fun to learn and to apply new technologies like really domain-specific frameworks (Ruby on Rails), fancy (JS-based) hybrid mobile application frameworks (Ionic or React Native) or even server-side JavaScript (Node.js) –  Learning new technologies gives Engineers and Start Up Guys a feeling of being cool and up-to-date to technology topics.

But does “being cool and up-to-date” really matter when it comes to “serious” (and with “serious”, I mean “professional”) development?

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Update #1: First approach / A dumb butler

Most of the time, I hate JavaScript. But sometimes, I am amazed about this technology, especially its ecosystem (and npm – sometimes).

First of all: I have not pushed my current code base to GitHub, because I want to try to provide a skeleton for developement, which takes a little time.

Here is a little sugar:


Looks pretty nice, doesn’t it?

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Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana are well-known implementations of so called “Intelligent Personal Assisstants” (IPA), providing users voice-interaction with a more or less “intelligent” system capable of delivering information about the weather, common facts or traffic jams.

But both Siri as well as Cortana are proprietary “black box” systems, so many of you folks (including me) may think: Meh.

Continue reading “Software-as-a-Butler?”