From gondolas to office dogs, a snapshot of San Francisco’s tech scene this week

Editor’s note: This week, we’re launching a new column called Screenshots, in which Senior Tech Reporter Jeff Elder reports on...

Editor’s note: This week, we’re launching a new column called Screenshots, in which Senior Tech Reporter Jeff Elder reports on the comings and goings of S.F.’s biggest industry. Stay tuned as we keep tabs on all things tech.

By Jeff Elder

Examiner Staff Writer

If you’re wondering when — if ever — The City’s downtown will celebrate a grand reopening, an insider tells us the lighting of Salesforce Tower for the holidays in mid-November may be tied to events and promotions in the Financial District, SoMa and along the Embarcadero. Talks with City Hall are happening now, the source tells us, and the delta variant’s presence is a key factor…

The gondola that zips riders from Mission Street up to Salesforce Park in a mere 60 seconds (more Slow and Luxurious than Fast and Furious) was quietly switched on a month ago. Did you know? A mammoth tooth was found on the park site that’s about the size and shape of Buster Posey’s catcher’s mitt. Some plant species in the park have been around since the time of the dinosaurs. So no wonder the gondola is so slow. It’s a bit of a time machine…

Speaking of reopening, the La Fromagerie location on 100 First St. — ringed by tech companies — was again serving brie and croissants on Thursday for the first time in more than a year. Co-owner Thomas Choffel, astutely aware of tech workers’ love for snacks, sent emails to Okta, Salesforce and other companies offering a free macaron (cookie) with any salad or sandwich order. He says (in his charming French accent) that tech workers are 100% of that location’s business, and he’s opening with a new license because “tech workers need happy hours again.” I know a few who agree…

La Fromagerie owner Thomas Choffel has reopened the SoMa shop at First and Mission streets near Salesforce and Okta, which now features a wine to-go license for techies’ happy hours. (Jeff Elder/The Examiner)

La Fromagerie owner Thomas Choffel has reopened the SoMa shop at First and Mission streets near Salesforce and Okta, which now features a wine to-go license for techies’ happy hours. (Jeff Elder/The Examiner)

Down on the Peninsula, Tom Siebel’s C3.ai remains one of the only tech companies we know of to be completely back in the office. A C3 source says several hundred of the AI company’s employees come into its glass-walled Redwood Shores offices each weekday and work, masks optional…

More Peninsula tech news you didn’t know: Facebook plans to build a bridge across Bayfront Expressway to a park open to the public this fall, a source familiar with the projects tells me…

San Mateo database startup Neo4j— which landed a massive $340 million funding round in July — has found a fun way to connect the home office to employees in London and Sweden. San Mateo biz dev manager Keoni Gaspar teaches a mixology class on Zoom. Sounds like a good way to toast that huge funding raise — and proof that some techies do need to enjoy happy hours together again…

Last week former President Donald Trump — via nine attorneys — hit Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey with a summons to respond to a lawsuit that says losing access to his accounts has made it considerably more difficult for the plaintiff to “lay the groundwork for his own potential campaign for the 2024 Republican Party nomination for President of the United States”…

This week, the self-driving wunder-company Waymo kicked off its tester program in The City, and the company says anyone can sign up for the program and help by downloading the Waymo One app. The first tester took a ride to the Stonestown Galleria mall. Waymo says its tester cars are driving 100,000 miles a week around The City. That’s a lotta trips to the mall…

Thursday was International Dog Day, and Stephanie Mangold shipped us a pic of her office corgi Coco Bean addressing the issue of phishing — or goldfishing, anyway. Stephanie works at the San Francisco cybersecurity insurance startup Coalition, located in Levi’s Plaza near the Embarcadero. Did you know their CEO Josh Motta was Microsoft’s youngest-ever employee? He was an intern at 15…

Coco Bean of San Francisco cybersecurity startup Coalition is the first Screenshots tech office dog.<ins> (Courtesy Stephanie Mangold)</ins>

Coco Bean of San Francisco cybersecurity startup Coalition is the first Screenshots tech office dog. (Courtesy Stephanie Mangold)

Send your Screenshots items and tips to jefelder@sfexaminer.com. For starters, we love office dogs! Send us your puppy pics and you might see them here.

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