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Why this Pixel engineer chose Google Taiwan

Welcome to the latest edition of “My Path to Google,” where we talk to Googlers, interns, apprentices and alumni about how they got to Google, what their roles are like and even some tips on how to prepare for interviews.Today’s post is all about Gordon Kuo, a Taiwan-based engineer on the Pixel Mobile Wireless Team.…

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Welcome to the latest edition of “My Path to Google,” where we talk to Googlers, interns, apprentices and alumni about how they got to Google, what their roles are like and even some tips on how to prepare for interviews.

Today’s post is all about Gordon Kuo, a Taiwan-based engineer on the Pixel Mobile Wireless Team. He shares what makes Google Taiwan a unique place for engineers to work and advice for anyone interested in applying to Google.

What’s your role at Google?

I’m an engineering lead on the Pixel Mobile Wireless team. Our goal is to help connect people across the world with Google Pixel phones. We solve hardware and software challenges and work with different teams to improve functionality and performance. We talk about everything from design and bug fixes to performance optimization, which makes every day feel different. I love that no matter what we’re working on, it’s always interesting and helpful.

How did you land in your current role?

After completing my PhD in Computer Networking, I started my career at a Taiwanese integrated circuit (IC) design company. After that, I worked on modems at a technology company in China for several years. During that time, I had a few friends and former colleagues at Google, and when we spoke about their jobs and the company culture, everyone shared really positive experiences. Getting the chance to build a career around work that I enjoy was one of the biggest draws. So I applied and interviewed — and now, two years in, I’m leading a team.

What was your application and interview experience like?

Above everything, my recruiter was really supportive, which helped make the process feel much more straightforward. I actually applied and interviewed for another engineering position at first, but I didn’t end up getting it. I was disappointed at the time, but it wasn’t long before my recruiter shared another position that was even more aligned with my skills and career goals. Finding the right fit doesn’t always happen right away, and I appreciated that my recruiter was so committed to setting me up for success.

What have you learned about leadership since joining Google?

Google is a place where people truly listen and communicate openly. Because of this, I’ve learned to never assume anything. Instead, I put in the time to better understand my team and others we work with. It’s important to stay on the same page when you’re leading a team or project, and that requires respect and regular communication.

What makes Google Taiwan such a special place to work?

Taiwan is home to world-class integrated circuit design companies and is known for its thriving manufacturing industry. There’s a lot of exciting product development work happening here too, and it’s one of our largest sites in Asia. In fact, Taiwan is our largest hardware hub outside of the U.S. — with an engineering team that is uniquely skilled in both software and hardware integration. We collaborate with other functions and teams worldwide, and have opportunities to lead important projects from start to finish. From working on widely used products to building and leading a team, I’ve had growth opportunities here that I couldn’t have imagined just a few years ago. I’m continually inspired by the work we do.

On a more personal note, Taiwan is a relatively small island, easy to get around and nestled between the beach and the mountains — it’s a pretty nice place to work!

You recently participated in a live-streamed event about career opportunities at Google Taiwan. Can you tell us more about that?

The event was aimed at helping potential candidates learn more about technical career opportunities at Google Taiwan and what it’s like to work with us. I really enjoyed the conversation! If anyone is interested, they can watch the recording.

What advice do you have for aspiring Googlers?

Work closely with your recruiter! My recruiter guided me through Google’s interview process, shared tips about how to answer leadership-based questions and gave me insight into what the technical interview would be like. I hadn’t experienced this kind of interview support and care before, and it went a long way in helping me prepare. If you’re applying for an engineering role, I recommend doing programming exercises to practice your coding abilities. I also revisited my textbooks to review material, brushed up on my skills and searched for tips online from previous interviewees. Going through an interview process can be nerve-wracking, but the best thing you can do is just go for it.

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An update on our work in responsible innovation

Launched in late 2019, to date more than 32,000 employees across Google have engaged in AI Principles training. Given our growing understanding of effective hybrid and remote learning, we continue to expand and modify the courses. For example, this year we adapted our popular four-part Tech Ethics self-study course to a one-part deep dive based…

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Launched in late 2019, to date more than 32,000 employees across Google have engaged in AI Principles training. Given our growing understanding of effective hybrid and remote learning, we continue to expand and modify the courses. For example, this year we adapted our popular four-part Tech Ethics self-study course to a one-part deep dive based on Googler feedback. Similarly, we launched the Responsible Innovation Challenge — taken by more than 13,000 employees — as a series of engaging online puzzles, quizzes and games to raise awareness of the AI Principles and measure employees’ retention of ethical concepts, such as avoiding unfair bias.

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Supporting news innovation in the Asia Pacific region

How the Innovation Challenge worksThe Asia Pacific GNI Innovation Challenge is open to news organizations of all sizes that aim to produce original journalism and whose projects focus on innovation to create a more sustainable and diverse news sector. Projects will be evaluated against several criteria, including: impact on the news community, innovation, feasibility and…

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How the Innovation Challenge works

The Asia Pacific GNI Innovation Challenge is open to news organizations of all sizes that aim to produce original journalism and whose projects focus on innovation to create a more sustainable and diverse news sector. Projects will be evaluated against several criteria, including: impact on the news community, innovation, feasibility and a willingness to share knowledge. Applicants should be based in the Asia Pacific region and have their principal place of business there. For more information on eligible projects, criteria and funding, see our website.

How to apply

Applications are open until August 23 at 11:59 PM SGT and can be submitted via our website in English, Bengali, Chinese (traditional), Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean or Thai. We’ll be hosting a virtual town hall on Wednesday, July 13 at 2:00 PM SGT to answer applicants’ questions.

The GNI Innovation Challenges have been driving innovation in news since 2018 and have funded over 200 projects in 47 countries globally. We want to help empower news organizations across the APAC region to pioneer new thinking to support quality journalism. We look forward to receiving your application!

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Google News Showcase continues to grow in the UK

At the beginning of last year, we brought Google News Showcase, our product experience and licensing programme for news publishers, to the U.K. It’s designed to help publishers engage more deeply with their readers – and to help readers find, follow and support the news organisations covering the issues that matter to them. We continue…

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At the beginning of last year, we brought Google News Showcase, our product experience and licensing programme for news publishers, to the U.K. It’s designed to help publishers engage more deeply with their readers – and to help readers find, follow and support the news organisations covering the issues that matter to them. We continue to learn, update and expand the product, and we’ve seen strong, steady numbers – both in terms of the number of publishers signing on for the product in the UK, and how readers are interacting with the content.

More publishers join News Showcase in the UK

We’ve negotiated and signed deals with almost 240 news titles in the U.K. since launching News Showcase. The most recent is The Guardian, building on our longstanding work together on digital innovation for the future of news.

Keith Underwood, CEO of The Guardian, commented: “We are pleased to have expanded our partnership with Google to make our journalism available in digital, video and other formats in ways that will engage even wider audiences. This new deal supports further investment in journalism and will bring a new audience back to our sites where we can build deeper relationships of enduring value.”

Local news publishers make up 93% of the titles who’ve signed up to News Showcase in the U.K. to curate news in new ways and deepen their engagement with online audiences. These include Grantham Journal, NationalWorld.com, Reach’s Belfast Live and Clear Sky’s North Devon Gazette.

As Mark Thompson, Editor of National World, says: “We believe it is vital that our stories, videos and images are given the value they deserve so that we can produce ever more insightful, reliable and relevant journalism for audiences all over the UK. News Showcase has enabled our teams based in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland to display their impressive work on a great platform and in a meaningful way.”

Simon Bax, CEO of Clear Sky, also tells us: “Joining the Google News Showcase has had a dramatic and immediate effect as it has enabled us to hire an additional journalist, has elevated our standing within the community and has increased the team’s self-assurance.”

We recently announced that we’re making it easier to find local publishers in Google News Showcase by bringing their panels into the local section of Google News. Through our partnerships with local news publishers in the U.K., we’ve seen first-hand how local news is an essential way for readers to connect to their communities and ensure they get the news that impacts their day-to-day lives.

Supporting publishers and journalists in the UK

News Showcase is one element of our broader investment in news and journalism in the U.K. We spent more than $18 million on training, partnerships and programming with news organisations and other news industry partners between 2018 to 2020, and we’ve trained 16,500 journalists and journalism students since 2015.

We’re proud to fund the Journalism AI fellowship, organised by the media think-tank Polis at the London School of Economics, and to support organisations like Headlines Network who are providing essential mental health resources for journalists in England and Wales. We’re continuing our support for the University of Central Lancashire’s Journalism innovation and Leadership (JIL) Programme for a third year and recently announced the Innovation Challenge for Europe, where small and medium-sized news organisations can apply for funding to stimulate innovation in news.

We’re dedicated to continuing our contribution to and collaboration with the news ecosystem, supporting the open web and continuing to provide access to information in the UK and elsewhere.

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