Malign Dave Eggers' latest work of Silicon Valley sci-fi all you'd like, but he nails one thing: tech's adoration of creepy corporate campuses. Not only does Apple's upcoming superstructure resemble a UFO, it employs a man whose sole job is thinking about decorative trees.
In the company’s own words, the new campus will offer “a serene environment reflecting Apple’s brand values of innovation, ease of use and beauty.” Despite the mothership’s sustainable credentials, though, the greenest part of the development isn’t even the building itself — it’s everything surrounding it. The renderings show something that hardly resembles a corporate campus it all. What it is, really, is a huge park.
Apple’s proposals describe the future landscape as “an ecologically rich oak savanna reminiscent of the early Santa Clara Valley.” Norman Foster says that Jobs wanted the campus to evoke the California of his childhood, one he “still remembered…as the fruit bowl of America.” What it all means is that David Muffly, Apple’s Senior Arborist, presumably has his hands full (yes, that’s his real job title).
This office will not be an "office structure" or "shelter from lightning with computers inside" so much as a physical incarnation of a brand. And that brand employs David Muffly, who is an Arborist. Vanity Fair points out that "apple trees will be displayed prominently near the center of the mothership’s park, while trees with other fruit, such as plums, persimmons, olives, apricots, and cherries will line its edges." Right now, a man named David Muffly is working around the clock to plan the perfect ratio of apple trees to non-apple trees, their alignment, density, and other metrics designed to keep Apple employees from thinking about anything other than their jobs and brands.