WorkSpaces: Secret.ly San Francisco

It's a curious world. Discover yours. So says Secret, the company behind the app that allows people to share messages anonymously within their circle of friends and people nearby (including coworkers). I recently visited their workspace here in San Francisco. Despite being centrally located they manage to keep an appropriate air of mystery. There is no signage outside. Inside I followed my only instructions: "look for the black floor and black unmarked double doors."

I was greeted, offered hydration, and allowed to freely wander the open office. The wall I entered through appeared to be a giant slab of black glass. Multiple lounge areas which acted as meeting space bookended several rows of white Jarvis desks with custom engraved dark wood tops. This created the effect that the desktops rose out of the floors themselves. Two of the four main walls were lined with huge windows. Natural light, as it turns out, is as human as keeping secrets.

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Black and white is the theme. Or at least grayscale. White file pedestals with dark tops match the desks. White pillars hold the room together. Matte silver task chairs. Black lamps. Glossy white mobile dry-erase boards. Apple products. The space is minimalist in its modernity.

A kitchen is nestled off in one corner stocked with various fuel sources: snacks, an espresso machine, beer taps, and for times when the truth must come out, a stocked liquor shelf.

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A lone dog trotted silently around the space sniffing various things. One long-bearded engineer stood on his anti-fatique mat, coding away in a T-shirt and shorts at his electric desk. No, wait, look again.

He's barefoot and wearing a kilt. 

This is today's alternative workspace. Work how you want, wearing what you want, in the position you want. Some scoff at the modern take on a workspace, but at the time of this writing, Secret's innovation has allowed them to raise $35 million in funding from 26 investors.

Version 2.0 of the app was just released which is said to be faster and with new chat features. I did have to sign an NDA before I could be released back into the bright, noisy city. So the rest is, well, a secret.