Wednesday, September 2, 2009

LL hires a new VP of something or other -- and my avatar still can't move

So let's do an imaginary conversation, you and I...

We happen to slog through the lag in Tamrannoch to meet at the Falling Anvil, and after exchanging the usual pleasantries about people and situations we mutually loathe, I happen to mention that on August 31, I read an article on Reuters which announced that our technological-fuck buddies at Linden Research Inc. have hired a former Adobe principessa to be their VP of...

And you eagerly interrupt, "What? what? Oh, tell me, tell me!"

And I say, "Go ahead, guess."

You look puzzled but thoughtful, and reply, "Ummm. ok. is it something like VP in charge of Making the Goddam Grid Run Reliably and Smoothly?"


"Allright." You think some more and ask, "Is it VP of in charge of Kicking Junior Employees in the Ass and Keeping Them on Track?"

I shake my head. "Nopers."

You seem frustrated for a moment and then suddenly brighten up with genuine hopefulness, "Is it VP in charge of Actually Understanding What Goes on Throughout the Grid and Responding to the Customers' Needs and Wants?"

"Hahahahahaha," I laugh.

You look like you are ready to punch me.

Then an expression of enlightenment comes over your face. "Oohhhhh, this is about the shift in focus to a business-slash-educational-slash-non-profit customer base isn't it? Are they assigning this person to work with those potential customers to make sure that the grid actually functions in way that is acceptable to those kinds of users?"

Now I look thoughtful for a moment. "To be honest, I'm not sure."


There is a dramatic pause. Then a drum roll. (We both look around in confusion wondering where the fucking drum roll came from) and then a resounding Monty-Pythonesque voice booms out in beatific tones:

"Lo, she shall be called Vice President of Web Development!!"

...and you go, "wtf?"

And I say, "Yeah, Resounding Beatific Voice is dead-on correct. Their new VP is Vice President of Web Development."

You repeat the phrase silently to yourself. You still look like you want to punch me. Then your eyes flash with indignation (you're really cute when you're mad, btw), and you demand an explanation.

So I sigh *sigh* and repeat verbatim what Reuters said:

"Linden Lab, creator of the virtual world Second Life, today announced the appointment of Robin Ducot as Vice President of Web Development. Reporting directly to CEO Mark Kingdon, Ducot will oversee the company`s diverse array of Web properties, sites and services. Specifically, Ducot will work to expand the company`s Web infrastructure and architecture, offering complementary lightweight Web experiences that extend the value of Second Life beyond the virtual world and help Residents more closely integrate Second Life with their daily lives."

This is the point where you actually try to punch me.

"That makes no fucking sense!" you hiss. "You're MAKING THIS SHIT UP! AREN'T YOU??!!!"

I sigh again *sigh*.

"I wish I was, Hon," I say with resignation in my voice. "Actually I was kinda hoping you could tell me what the fuck 'complimentary lightweight Web experiences' are. Is it something like the complimentary beverages on a badly-run airline where ya get that little cup of soda and too much ice and they don't even leave the can with you?"

You look for a moment like you are going to cry...and then you start laughing. "No I think they mean complimentary in the other sense of the word. Ok, so you say this poor woman comes from Adobe. What's the scoop?"

Once again I quote from the Reuters article:

"Ducot brings almost 20 years of engineering, project management and Web interface development expertise to Linden Lab. Prior to joining the company, Ducot served as VP of Web Development at Adobe Systems where she managed, distribution of the Adobe Reader and Flash Player, and Web services for Adobe's SaaS offerings. During her tenure at Adobe, Ducot provided organizational leadership for a team of 240 creative and technology professionals. Prior to joining Adobe, Ducot was VP of Web Development at Macromedia (acquired by Adobe), where she drove the redesign and re-architecture of, a site that catered to seven million unique users a month. Her career also includes senior management positions at Avolent, and Reuters, as well as senior technical roles AT&T and BGS Systems. Ducot holds a BS in Computer Science and Art History from the University of Massachusetts. Also active in the non-profit sector, Ducot sits on the board of Southern Exposure,an organization that promotes art and art education. "

You shake your head and chuckle. "Well, at least she's a fucking adult. It's probably another waste of resources by the lab, but shit, that's what they seem to do for fun these days."

I am about to ask you how long you think this woman is going to last in the stinky locker room environment at the Lab, when a blue announcement box pops up in the upper corner of our screens, reading:

"Due to asset server issues we suggest you do not, REPEAT, DO NOT try to rez any 'no copy' objects because if you do, you're probably gonna be shit outta luck."

You shake your head and say, "Ok let me get this straight, they've just hired some big hoop-dee-doo, silly-con-valley brainy girl genius to make "complimentary lightweight Web experiences" when they still can't keep the grid from running like a bad septic system at a frat house on the weekends. Don't they understand that they're never going to retain serious business and non-profit customers unless they can promise a product that offers reliability, stability, and improved forms of security? Don't they understand that they have to stop alienating and frustrating the individual customer base?!"

But I don't hear you. My mind has wandered. It's off in some fantasy, picturing that sublime moment when I finally get to meet Philip Rosedale....


  1. Bah, he'd never listen to you anyhoo, he has a map system to redesign for some reason I simply don't understand. I can't rez things, but at least the map scrolls smoothly.

  2. Hey Headburro,

    For the answer to why I am dreaming of the sublime moment when I finally meet Phil Rosedale, I refer you to the green fine print on the left hand side of this page titled "Disclaimer." If Philip chooses to listen to me or not is largely irrelevant.

  3. ROBLOX is empowered by an ever growing membership base of over 300,000 creator players who generate an infinite variety of highly immersive experiences.

    These experiences range from 3D multiplayer games and competitions, to interactive adventures where friends can take on new personas imagining what it would be like to be a dinosaur, a miner working a mine or an astronaut out in space.