They left with their loaded-up cardboard boxes, but the Google guys' connection to Stanford has never ended:
Stanford was good to Google and Google was good to Stanford. In fact, Google and Stanford are literally business partners. One of Google's main assets, the PageRank patent, is owned by Stanford University. Google paid the university in stock and cash for an exclusive licensing partnership, plus Annual royalties. The patent is exclusively licensed to Google until 2011. Typically, if the patent is producing results, it can be renegotiated at that time.
It was one of their Stanford professors, David Cheriton, who introduced Larry and Sergey to Andy Bechtolsheim, who is not only a computer whiz, but also a wizard at spotting Silicon Valley startups, in which he invests. Cheriton became an early Google investor as well.
Google's first employee was fellow graduate student Craig Silverstein. Silverstein now is Google's Director of Technology.
Sergey's Ph.D. advisor, Professor Rajeev Montwani, became a company advisor when Sergey and Larry left Stanford. Montwani also was an early Google investor, holding an undisclosed amount of shares in the company.
In 2002, Terry Winograd took a sabbatical from Stanford and became visiting researcher at Google. He spent his time there studying both the theory and practice of human-computer interaction.
The designer of Google's logo, Ruth Kedar, was a Stanford faculty member.
John Hennessy has served on the Google board ...