An enterprising young fellow named Eric Simons secretly lived at AOL headquarter for two months. He was given a badge while working a short stint at AOL's Imagine K12 incubator event for young education entrepreneurs. He really enjoyed his visit, so he just stayed, and his badge kept working. He used the company showers and gym, slept on the company sofas, and worked on his business plan until he was finally busted by a security guard. Having since secured $50K for his startup, ClassConnect, he has found rental accommodation. Daniel Terdiman wrote for CNet:
Having spent several months legitimately working in the building, often quite late, Simons had noticed that although there were security guards with nightly rounds, there were at least three couches that seemed outside those patrols. Plus, they looked fairly comfortable. He claimed them.
This was his routine: He'd work until midnight or later, and then fall asleep around 2 a.m. on one of the couches. At 7 a.m. -- and no later than 8 a.m. so he'd be safely out of his field bed before anyone else arrived -- he'd wake up, go down to the gym for a workout and a shower, and then go back upstairs and scarf a breakfast of cereal and water or Coke. Then he'd work all day, finally waiting until everyone else in the building had gone home before returning to one of his three favored couches.
"I got a really good work ethic," he said, "and I got in shape, since I had to work out every morning."
But the real point was that he was spending next to nothing. The first month, he spent just $30, mainly on the occasional trip to McDonald's or for "random food expenditures when I got sick of eating ramen and cereal. I could have not spent a dollar, but I was going crazy."
Then, of course, there was Thanksgiving. That Thursday, to splurge, he grabbed dinner at a local Boston Market.
Meet the tireless entrepreneur who squatted at AOL
(Image: Eric Simons)
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