All Hail the Espresso Maker

When we opened our new corporate headquarters in San Juan, Puerto Rico, in January 2016, founder and CEO André Wolper was focused on more than the complexities of the big move. He was also thinking about those damn fine Puerto Rican coffee beans growing in the mountains.

And this explains the arrival of equipment just as mission-critical as computers and servers: the shimmering ECM Elektronika, described by its maker as “the perfect harmony of aesthetics, convenience, and quality.”

Little did André know that the espresso machine would become an object of worship, an altar of precisely dosed caffeine and exquisite flavor. And a provider of rocket fuel to the staff’s cerebral cortexes, fuel that helps everyone plow through mountainous daily task lists.

OK, we accept that our wired staff is slower than the computing speeds of our 3D-image rendering servers. But they’re fast, if not occasionally jittery.

Wilitza Vazquez, director of business operations, joked that when the Elektronica arrived in May 2016, one month after she joined the company, André spent almost as much time teaching her how to make a good coffee as he did teaching her about business-related tasks.

“Since we’ve had the machine, we’ve all turned into barista wannabes,” Wil said, “and we’ve been subtly competing about who makes the best foam.”

There’s even a move afoot to give the Elektronica full employee status, with benefits. But how do we pay it? With Bitcoins?