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Rod Humble leaving Linden Lab

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Darrius Gothly wrote:

Can I count on your vote, Storm?

No.  You know I would be lying if I wrote yes.  That being said, most privately held companies do not 'vote' on a CEO position .... the position is appointed.   Influence is EVERYTHING.  You lack when we speak of such qualities whereas I do not.  I can not vote but I do have influence.  And my answer is still an emphatic no. 

 

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Storm Clarence wrote:


Darrius Gothly wrote:

Can I count on your vote, Storm?

No.  You know I would be lying if I wrote yes.  That being said, most privately held companies do not 'vote' on a CEO position .... the position is appointed.   Influence is EVERYTHING. 
You lack when we speak of suck qualities whereas I do not
.  I can not vote but I do have influence.  And my answer is still an emphatic no. 

 

 

I agree, absolutely. You have them in spades..

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Storm Clarence wrote:


Darrius Gothly wrote:

Can I count on your vote, Storm?

No.  You know I would be lying if I wrote yes.  That being said, most privately held companies do not 'vote' on a CEO position .... the position is appointed.   Influence is EVERYTHING.  You lack when we speak of suck qualities whereas I do not.  I can not vote but I do have influence.  And my answer is still an emphatic no. 
 

LOL Well of course we don't vote on the new CEO. Odd you did not comprehend my true meaning as you usually demonstrate a very high degree of reading comprehension. (Perhaps you're just having an off day, eh?) However we do agree that influence, and just as importantly the business connections one keeps, are of utmost importance in being considered and hired.

As for our respective levels of influence, It would be pointless for us to have a "dangle measuring" contest, especially as regards the backrooms and boardroom of Linden Lab. No doubt your contacts take great pains to convince you that you are of great importance in their decision making process. It is always important to make the mark feel needed, integral, perhaps even indispensible at all times.

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Darrius Gothly wrote:


Storm Clarence wrote:


Darrius Gothly wrote:

Can I count on your vote, Storm?

No.  You know I would be lying if I wrote yes.  That being said, most privately held companies do not 'vote' on a CEO position .... the position is appointed.   Influence is EVERYTHING.  You lack when we speak of such qualities whereas I do not.  I can not vote but I do have influence.  And my answer is still an emphatic no. 
 

LOL Well of course we don't vote on the new CEO. Odd you did not comprehend my true meaning as you usually demonstrate a very high degree of reading comprehension. (Perhaps you're just having an off day, eh?) However we do agree that influence, and just as importantly the business connections one keeps, are of utmost importance in being considered and hired.

As for our respective levels of influence, It would be pointless for us to have a "dangle measuring" contest, especially as regards the backrooms and boardroom of Linden Lab. No doubt your contacts take great pains to convince you that you are of great importance in their decision making process. It is always important to make the mark feel needed, integral, perhaps even indispensible at all times.

Are you trying to butter me up?  My answer is still a no.

 

ETA Fixed a typo :|  Dillon had too much fun with it.

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Looking back on the history of SL and it's CEO's I think of managing a bar or a club. Some people think a bar is easy money: open a place, serve drinks, wach the money roll in for a few years, go on early retirement. The truth is that it is hard work and that you can make a lot of money if you stay on it long enough. I know this is different because the CEO's of Linden Lab did not buy the place, they were hired by the shareholders to run the place. But still I would like to continue on my analogy:

 

Philip Rosedale had a concept for an original club and started it. After a while people came flocking in, the place was crowded money was flowing in, but money was also flowing out. Waiters had to be paid, gas, electricity... . The press was enthousiast about the place and celebreties named it their favourite hang out. More people came in. But more people meant more work of the teadious kind: Drunk customers had to be kicked out, restrooms needed more frequent cleaning, ID's had to be checked at the entrance and plumbing had to be kept working.

Philip Rosedal started wondering where his dream went, this was not building a hot new place! This was housekeeping!  He started to look for new projects he could start. He thought: "Why not make nice places with dim lights where people canexchange virtual hugs?"

More ore less at the same time disaster struck in different ways. As any place with an original style, some people feel at home and others don't. Those that did not feel at home and came because of the hype started leaving. The number of customers dwindled. When asked why they left they started complaining: "The stairs to get there are too steep. We were hoping to date a millionaire instead of that we are dating regular people and we have to pay or own drinks. The pints of beer here don't look like the paper cups in Starbucks, we feel lost". Economic crisis hit and people spent less. Journalists decided health spa's were the new place to be and the club got less press. Never the less, the club was a still a great place to be and still could provide a decent living for anybody whoput the effort in it.

A new manager was hired.

Mark Kingdom came. He vowed to turn the situation around. Costs had to be cut. Personnel had to go, peanuts had to be counted lest they were distrubuted too freely. Based on the reports of customers leaving, the manager changed the club. The place was made to look more like Starbucks and beer was served in paper cups . New customers willing to pay a bit more were led to quiet (=boring)lounges where they got their own bar stool without having to interact with the regular crowd. The regular crowd was unhappy but not ready to leave because this was their only hangout.

Because the new policy did not work, another manager was hired. This one said to himself "if I go a bit back to the original idea without ignoring the new customers, this place will find it's old glory and more". He was sure he could do what Philip Rosedale could not, make the club into a tool for early retirement and a lifetime of happy creative pursuits ever after. When that did not work, he quit.

Now patrons are waiting for a new manager. Let's hope it's a club owner at heart. Someone who knows what makes his place special. Someone who comes to the place just for the pleasure of meeting the regular crowd and hearing their latest jokes, someone who can do basic electricity and plumbing when needed but who also has the adresses of the best technicians in town, someone who knows when to put a fresh lick of paint but also when to stop redecorating. And more importantly, someone who doesn't want to retire early because that would mean abandoning his favourite club.

 

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We need a CEO that listens plain and simple. One that cares about the bread and butter of Linden Labs. Expansion in to their "Patterns" and  "Dio" apps are fine IF they don't neglect the people that pay the bills, the residents of SL. A CEO that will hold town hall meetings, that will hear what we have to say and ACT on what he/she hears. Someone that actually is IN Second Life would be ideal. Someone like Jessica Lyons, would be excellent. Someone that would hear that tier is too high and that advertising SL on the radio, TV commercials and other avenues is needed to get new residents and someone that would get rid of the damn click ads on the side of the dashboard that advertise other competitive virtual worlds.!

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Cully Andel wrote:

STILL no official announcement? That's a little worrying

For whom is it worrying?  You?  If so, then why?

 

I sleep like a baby at night.  Never once did I break a sweat or have a nighmare over Rodvik.Resident leaving his million dollar job with Linden Lab. 

 

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Cully Andel wrote:

STILL no official announcement? That's a little worrying

They are working on it. Perhaps...  :matte-motes-big-grin:

What-to-tell.jpg

 

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Coby Foden wrote:


Cully Andel wrote:

STILL no official announcement? That's a little worrying

They are working on it. Perhaps...  :matte-motes-big-grin:

Has anyone allowed for the possibility that Linden Lab doesn't know Rod has left the building?

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Madelaine McMasters wrote:


Coby Foden wrote:


Cully Andel wrote:

STILL no official announcement? That's a little worrying

They are working on it. Perhaps...  :matte-motes-big-grin:

Has anyone allowed for the possibility that Linden Lab doesn't know Rod has left the building?

Rod mave have missed the fact that when he clicked "accept" to log in with his Viewer that as far as LL was concerned, "All your stuffs now belongs to us."

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I don't think Rod had any intension at all to stay longer than a few years. That's how these things work. It is rare for any employee to stay with any company for any amount of time, at least today. Really, I think it comes with the large paychecks these people are getting. If the compensation was directly linked to actual results, then CEOs would stick around longer. Today, somehow, the CEOs are shielded from any kind of responsibility.

To me tho, Rod's reign serves as comfirmation to me that all the big names in the industry are just guys that got lucky. It is their fanboys in the gaming media that keep propping them up as geniuses. The same goes for Will Wright. He is gone also. See, SL is a challenge, and neither of the the 2 of them showed that they could even understand the basics. Yes, there are some subjective areas that can't be pinpointed exactly, but there are also very scientifically straightforward things that both of these "legends" missed or screwed up completely. Seriously, any average successful business person could have figured this stuff out, but again the "legends" missed them completely.

Just look at the mesh clothing issue. LL probably lost millions of dollars on that, and LL totally ignored it for years. It was not a difficult issue to begin with. As we saw, it was a couple months of work, no matter which way you went. Today, years after the initial release of mesh, we still sit here with no finished solution. It's f....ing ridiculous, especailly when you analyze what brings average people into SL, and what keeps them here. This fiasco shows a serious lack of understanding of not just the customers, but also the technology.

The clothing issue is not even the biggest glaringly obvious missed step from Rod and his team. Any1 that has listened to me rant about the failures of our leaders should know where I'm going. How does any person walk into a virtual world and not notice, right away, how useless the inworld search engine is? How does any1 not understand that if your inworld search engine doesn't give good results, your virtual world will suffer greatly. It's OBVIOUS, yet it's been useless for years now. Today, I literally only open it to search for a person that messaged me, so that I can reply to them in IM. I stopped even checking where my store ranked in the search results years ago. This is directly linked to the loss of sims, which is why I keep screaming about it. For virtual worlds, the inworld search engine plays a big role in the economy. It replaces many things that are normal benchmarks in a real life economy. When sim owners aren't rewarded with higher rankings, which equates to more visitors and more income, because of their efforts, than why own a sim at all. I have always contended that the loss of sims is directly linked to the inworld search engine, and it is proven in the statistics. The date of the initial decline in sim ownership corresponds with the first major change to the inworld search engine.

These are not the only major missed steps, but the 2 that stand out to me the most. Overall, I'm dumbfounded how a company of over 200 employees can get so little done. I watch other developers on many other platforms and programs work circles around what the Lab gets done. Maybe it's a matter of spending too much time debating, and not enough time actually doing. I also think you have to hire people that love your product. FAR toooooo many Lindens to don't use SL at all. IMHO, this is exactly why crap doesn't get fixed, because they don't care. It's a job, and they get paid well. They don't attract people that are passionate about the platform, they attract people that want a big paycheck and a stepping stone. If I'm CEO, I'd mandate work time to f..ck around in SL. If they still weren't passionate about it, I'd boot them out the door. I remember when 1 Linden talked about how they shot each other with nerf guns. I immediately thought, why the f.ck aren't they shooting each other in SL? Heck, If I was CEO, I make the whole company battle it out on a sim every single week, have teams, and keep score. I'd make them play with the things their customers make in SL.

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Since the massive marketing machine that is LL managed to issue just 9 Press Releases during 2013 (Nine, count 'em, that's less than one a month!) then it's hardly surprising that they either can't be bothered or are still working out what to say.

Actually, Senderov has merely raised higher the brick wall of non-communication that Viale started building once he had realised that LL's management was unable to offer cogent responses to informed criticism. If you don't say anything you can't be reminded you said it when you realise how stupid it was and try and pretend it didn't exist, which was Amanda's moronic take on corporate revisionism - spot the similarity to Suspiria?

Once Rod's hubris at not being able to smooth talk the customers dissipated, and he closed down his communications channels (email, feeds, Twitter, blog etc) and his attempts to find sympathy elsewhere (sympathy from SLU; snigger!) foundered on public outcry at his hypocrisy, he was on the slippery slope of having nobody among the SL customer cognoscenti (well, nobody significant) to applaud his efforts at product diversification, which was seen merely to result in diversion of scarce resources away from fixing SL's problems.

I presume that he was fired as a result of a board schism (Will Wright disappeared at the same time) which resulted from a disagreement over the direction of LL, and the dilution of the likelihood that SL would offer a mature model for a "3D" Virtual Environment that would be the paradigm user interface.

That the remainder of the board don't seem to have a clue how to progress SL into a browser based, smartphone and tablet dominated future would have been an embarrassment that would not have stopped Rod and Will from wanting to further the gamification of SL, which leads down a blind alley, of course.

I confidently expect LL to appoint as CEO a futurist of some sort (assuming they can find one who isn't making a fortune helping the US Armed Forces create super-soldiers and robot drones) since they have tried the original optimist entrepreneur, the merchant banker and the game designer. The alternative would be a competent marketer, who would monetise the game inworld.

Sorry, I just used the two words "competent" and "marketer" in the same sentence . . .

© The Judge

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I want to second your nomination of the atrocious inworld search as the foremost failing of SL. The destruction of the previously usable serach is the sole reason my inworld activity has declined to zero (excep on Aditi). If you can't find stuff to do, buy, look at, then you do, but or look at anything and the whoe; thing becomes essentuially pointless. I was left with an occasional bit of building, but then that was stopped by the ToS change. That takes second place though, as building is not so universally important to all residents.

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Most SL users, even the old timers, don't know the history of the inworld search engine. The 2 big things that drew me to SL was the creative aspect and the build your own business aspect. Very early on, I saw just how important the inworld search engine was. Because of this, I read all that I could about it. Originally, or soon after SL started, a single SL resident with awesome coding skills took up the task of creating a search engine specifically made for SL. The amount of land played a big role in it's ranking. This encouraged every merchant to own land, and to own as much as they could afford.

Yes, the engine could be gamed, but it took real effort to game the engine. This is exactly what you want. Making a search engine that can't be gamed is almost impossible, and brings more negative consequences than just allowing the gaming. When it comes to discouraging gaming of an engine, the goal should always be to make it alot of work for the person gaming. They will quickly see that their time is being wasted and just stop.

If you could go back and take a snapshot of the search engine in 2009, you'd have seen an almost perfect search engine. No matter what you searched for, the location would be ranked according to their success in SL, for the most part. The more words you searched with, the more refined the results were. If you searched for "hammer animation" you were pretty much guaranteed to find a hammer animation in minutes. You could even teleport directly to the hammer animation on the parcel. No searching around at all.

Then, LL started listening to the complainers saying that the search engine was bias toward the larger merchants. They remove Picks from the results algorythm. It wasn't 6 months later that LL implemented the GSA engine. With this, their goal was to make the search engine fair. They didn't understand that fair meant unusable for anything. They didn't understand how the competitive engine was better for users, merchants, and business. Their goal was to socialize the search engine, so that every1 had a chance. What they failed to understand is that every1 already had a chance with the old engine, they just couldn't be some newb merchant and dominate from the start. They had to work their way up.

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<soapbox>

I'm not requoting your whole post here but I've been saying for a long time one of the biggest problems we have is that the Linden's no longer have Second Lives.  Or at least the ones who are responsible for making design (GUI) and other decisions.

The proof of this to me was CHUI.  CHUI almost went live without a Chat Bar.  I can't comprehend how any one could have a Second Life without a Chat Bar.  I got slapped on the hand for saying this in the CHUI JIRA's when we were trying to get it through their heads that it was needed.  I find it incomprehensible that we needed to make a case for why the Chat Bar was needed.

</soapbox>

 

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mikka Luik wrote:

We seem to have a replacement ....

 


Ebbe Altberg | CEO

Ebbe Altberg comes to Linden Lab with more than 25 years of experience leading teams and creating software used by hundreds of millions of users. After graduating from Middlebury College he went on to work at Microsoft, where he spent most of his 12 years leading teams that created the world’s most popular productivity products such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Office.

 

In 2000, Ebbe moved to Ingenio, Inc., where he headed up product and had a stint as interim CEO. As Chief Product Officer, he lead Ingenio to become an innovative telephony and marketplace company, which was ultimately acquired by at&t Interactive in 2007.

 

Ebbe then joined Yahoo! in Europe as VP Head of Audience, with responsibility for all consumer-facing products and affairs. After a couple of years he was promoted to SVP Media Products, a group of about 800 engineering and product people that created the Yahoo! homepage, news, sports, finance, and entertainment products and platforms.

 

Most recently, Ebbe went back to a small startup, BranchOut, where he was the COO and managed the teams building products for professionals such as BranchOut and Talk.co.

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"BranchOut is the largest professional community on Facebook"

Figures.

He was VP Media Engineering at Yahoo.

Which means nothing, so presumably he is a marketer.

© The Judge

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Looks like SLU caught this several hours ago.

This posted to Business Wire about an hour ago.

“We remain committed to world-changing innovation from Linden Lab,” said Jed Smith of the company’s Board of Directors. “We’re keenly focused on providing incredible experiences for all of our customers, and Ebbe is the perfect person to help lead our team as we continue to serve and grow our global audience of active users."

“Linden Lab has long been at the forefront of building experiences that entertain people while empowering them to express themselves and profit from their creations,” said Altberg. “Our customers' creativity is unparalleled, and I’m proud to join the talented team that serves them. Second Life is now in its eleventh year, and every day, users continue to create more and more amazing experiences to enjoy. Though much younger, Blocksworld has already seen hundreds of thousands of unique user-created worlds shared for everyone to play with. I'm absolutely committed to supporting our customers and helping them become even more successful. There are significant opportunities ahead, and I look forward to leading us into the next phase of growth.”

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