Road trip: Ask Jeeves in Campbell

I knew I could keep my promise to talk more about Ask, because I had a few photos up my sleeve. I was recently enjoying some tequila grilled chicken at Left at Albuquerque down in the Campbell Pruneyard, and I remembered that Ask Jeeves had opened an office in Campbell somewhere. So I did a little searching, and it turns out that the office was very close!

Camera-phone in hand, I nonchalantly approached. First, I saw the sign for Ask Jeeves–I was in the right spot!

Ask Jeeves outside sign

As I walked toward the building, I noticed a pretty mini-waterfall. I’m a sucker for that stuff, so I snapped a shot:

Ask Jeeves water sculpture

Then I entered the building. It was pretty early in the morning, so no one was there. But look at what they do; when the office is empty, they leave a cardboard Ask Jeeves cut-out sitting behind the reception desk. Now that’s just cool:

Ask Jeeves holding down the fort

If they jettison the butler, who will hold down the fort when the office is empty? Because no one was there to answer the door, I reluctantly retraced my steps out of the building. I think it would be neat to visit lots of Silicon Valley offices and take pictures of the digs. Let me know if anyone can get me into TiVo; I used to drive by their building every day on 237. :)

Update: Awesome! Jeeves knew all along that I saw him minding the reception desk That butler has his stuff together. In fact, it looks like Jeeves has been going on a few field trips on his own. Next, Jeeves and I will team up and see if we can get Jeremy or Tim to let us Eat at URL’s.

(Not really.)

56 Responses to Road trip: Ask Jeeves in Campbell (Leave a comment)

  1. SPR

    Are you considering a career change? Like to be a detective?

  2. rxbbx

    this one is really cool… empty buildings… jeeves in cardboard himself behind the desk

  3. How many tequilas had you drank!!!!

  4. Ben

    Where’s the photos the security camera took of you breaking in, grabbing the cutout and running down the street with a big cardboard man under your arm? :D

  5. The cardboard cutout is the co-presenter on the future of search at SES. Matt knows what he is doing.

  6. I think Gary or Harith needs to send you one of those cutout Jeeves and then you sit him in Sergey or Larry’s office chair and snap the shot….what a fine picture to add to your “Jeeves” collection.

  7. SEO Pirate

    I could get you into TiVo!

  8. Fionn, it was tequilla-grilled chicken, so I’m sure any alcohol in the dish had burned off. :) Come to think of it, it would be pretty cool to have a cardboard cut-out of Jeeves in my office though.

    SEO Pirate, would this involve walking through the front door, or a late-night event involving a rock and a glass window? :)

  9. BillyS

    Keep it up Matt and you’ll have the Jeeves folks at the ‘plex peeking in the windows too.

  10. Perhaps they’ll find LEGO Sergey & Larry staring at them from behind the reception desk :-)

  11. Travis

    Now that Jeeves behind the desk filling in for the receptionist is just an awesome idea. Who would have thought!

  12. Google needs a mascot to greet everyone at the front door, too. I’m thinking Inigo Mattoya would work out nicely.

  13. What a shame if they fire Jeeves as he is famous through-out the world, do they have a specific reason to get rid of such a great icon?

    Class putting him behind the desk when the office is closed.

  14. Wayne

    Come on Matt spill the beans you were really there looking for a new job ;) Anyone who leaves NSA cant be happy at any one job for to long :)

  15. But look at what they do; when the office is empty, they leave a cardboard Ask Jeeves cut-out sitting behind the reception desk. Now that’s just cool:

    Thats not cool, I think that is scarey!!!

  16. ak

    DEFINATELY TAKE PICS OF SILLICON VALLEY PLCES!

  17. Without a suit in the building, most in the Campbell office start arriving after 9:00am. You must have been there _early_. If you’re ever buy again during the waking hours, someone from the Offline R&D team will be happy to break bread and discuss the state of the search.

    Here is some more official type info on our new Campbell office: http://blog.ask.com/2005/11/movin_on_up_to_.html

  18. What time in the morning were you there?

  19. SEO Pirate

    Well… yes. That’s part of the pirate code Matt. We takes we we please, and we do it with ease!

  20. lex

    Wish I could be in the USA and enjoy being surrounded by People with this sence of humour instead of being in germany and looking into these sullen emotionless faces each and every day.

  21. Brandon

    And, corporate espionage reaches new frontiers of …

  22. The cardboard cut out is indeed pretty cool. I’d never even have the idea to take a photo though. Either you must have been bored or you were on espionage ;)

  23. Rod

    Matt
    you’ve seen the celebrity photo hunters who keep trying to get snaps of themselves with stars, well you should do the same, get a pic of yourself somewhere you should not be, professionally I mean !

    Your mission, should you agree to take it ….

  24. Perhaps they’re getting old.

  25. If he’s fired, perhaps we’ll finally know the answer to this query after he’s on Oprah.

    http://www.ask.com/web?q=is+jeeves+gay

  26. I love seeing stuff like this!

  27. Were you wearing that swashbuckler outfit at the time?

  28. Wonder if there were more cutouts in the pub down the road?

  29. Harith

    Good morning Matt

    Enough Ask..enough SEO..enough WebSpam..enough everything..

    Where is my ” Eastern Kentucky” Gadgeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeets post :-)

    Have a great day.

  30. Séan

    The butler was apparantly ‘fired’… but as we know, corporations like ask do not open themselves up for lawsuits like ‘unfair dismissal’…

    Thus explaining the butler behind the desk! Route him through to a dead end job that he hates, and maybe he’ll leave of his own accord!

    What do you mean its a cardboard cut-out?

  31. Sally that girl

    hate to be a spoil sport but that is the old Ask Jeeves, they did a makeover on him and he got a new younger look before the sale of the company. That Jeeves probably went into storage before the company was acquired by IAC. Great spy photo though

  32. Matt you got busted big time. This could be the next WaterGate scandal, lol.

  33. I think AskJeeves is a good challenger for Search Engine Market.
    Hope for Google they take care :)

  34. Wow! I want one of them… Wonder how much I could get sell one for on eBay.

  35. It’s the biter bit: “Tel est pris qui croyait prendre” ;-)

  36. Simon

    Now if only someone would have taken a picture of the two of you taking pictures of each other…

  37. Matt, tequila grilled chicken for breakfast? we’re not that hard core in Europe yet, I must come over to the US for some photo taking and grilled chicken breakfasts.

  38. Matt….This was funny …Reality TV they catch you back..hhmmm..

    Have you ever hold an Ask Jeeves Sales Person Business Card _ ?

    It includes his name in a query as if you are searching for him on Ask.com but when you go online and search for him…it turns no results…

    Ask are ontheir way….but they are sloooooooooooooow.

    KAI 2006

  39. “enjoying some tequila grilled chicken… pretty early in the morning”

    Chicken for breakfast?

  40. The heck with the butler, get a picture of Paul next time…..;)

  41. Boydie/Mike, I’m glad you ask about that. If I were writing the post again, I would have inserted “(Some time passes.)” between the Albuquerque paragraph and the following paragraph, because I had the notion while at the Pruneyard, but it wasn’t until the next time I was in Campbell that I saw the Ask Jeeves office and snapped the pics. I had an early-morning appointment with a different business in the same business park, and the traffic to Campbell was really light, so I got there earlier than I expected. So that’s plenty of extra-boring detail for the ultra-interested.

    I thought about adding those words, but that would annoy 1000+ Bloglines users who probably don’t care and don’t want to see the post again. So I take the opportunity to clarify here in the comments. :) Thanks again for asking..

  42. If anybody happens to see Scoble, let him know not to worry about the invite.
    They often have good talks, so people can stop by pretty easily. A friend just got back from there.

    microsoft badge

  43. skipfactor

    Made me post, that was a beer-spewer, thanks. Up on your tippy-toes to get a good shot over that bar. Too freaking funny. Something tells me Jeeves has seen a massive spike in off-the-clock fannie shots.

  44. I found the Ask Jeeves crawled my sites usually, but I can’t find the results for my sites from the Ask Jeeves, It waste my bandwidth.

  45. Jeff

    I really should stop reading you Matt. Last night I had a scary dream about a cardboard butler following me around with a camera. Good job.

  46. Mike Solomon

    Hi Matt, you can be really cool without pretending to be a total idiot. That waterfall stuff, the infantile marketing done by Google does not hide your true mission.

    We’re not stupid. Glad to see your shares go down like rolling stones.

  47. Mike Solomon

    By the way, that is definitely not a phone camera. It is a camera with flash and all.

    One day everyone will see that the mission of Google is way less candy than what your public relations tries to market.

    And you never fooled me, you are Googleguy, the guy that gets free advice from lesser warned webmasters on certain well known forums.

  48. Mike Solomon

    You guys will notice that on the picture the butler took Matt was flat against the glass. On the photo he took he was about a yard away from the door.

    So, on Matt’s(Matt is a former NSA spy agency employee) “accidental” trip he took several shots of that door, just…just for the fun of it, you know, how cool that he saw this competitor office right there 50 miles off his normal drive….uh….

    And this whole story is so true that he had a tequila chicken at 8 AM and he even took a picture of the local waterfall, he’s such a sucker for that stuff. The waterfall does it for me, he’s innocent, he was just there to document the trees and birds. What about his hipster PDA, Matt Cutts, the former NSA spy, does not use a real pda! How cool. How natural. How innocent.

    Looks like he thinks we’re suckers too….

  49. Hey Matt — You probably meant Jeremy or TimM, but … where you really want to eat is “Dots” (the cafeteria in the Santa Clara building where Y! Search is now…) Really _so_ much better than URL’s. :) Just print out this handy invitation for free admittance (but not free food!)

  50. Kerry Kobashi

    Matt, next time mail me and we’ll do beer at Rock Bottom! AskJeeves is down the road from me.

  51. jeeves the buttler [ sarah]

    sheeks! you young ones are just the same, dont i deseve a holiday every now and then.
    rushing after you lot?

  52. arvin orbeta

    this ask jeeves is a wast of time. i dont even like goig on this site. i was just browsing and your site just come out. i dont want to go at this ste again. you are just a looser!!!!

  53. Hi Matt,

    I came across this post again while looking into Ask, they seem to be growing slighty more in the UK due to the TV ads they have running, are they doing this in the US?

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