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Qarl Linden laid off

Have you heard of Qarl Linden? Someone who comes close to having super-powers.

Sculpties, improving performance on low-end hardware, the upcoming mesh code, bug-fixes and performance-improvements all over the place. One of the Lab’s most valuable developers – and not even near the top of the salary range that the Lab pays.

But wait! Don’t just take my word for it! Here’s his performance review from two weeks ago:

Can I say how invaluable you are to the render team? You burned through a large number of crashes and critical rendering bugs. Without a lot of direction, you completed the feature/gpu table on S3 project, thought through a LOT of the complexities, and produced something incredibly useful. You enabled RenderDivisor to work on low end hardware (even if the hardware couldn’t take advantage of it in the way we hoped.). You did a ton of work to get mesh ready for public beta. You’ve fought long and hard trying to get Apple to fix their drivers while seeing if we can handle our textures better. And that was just this quarter (And you did all this while the company was undergoing a major reorg and giving us TONS of direction changes). You consistently brought things to fruition that worked well the first time. I love working with you. As does everyone on the team. You rocked it.

July 2010 – Q210 Manager Review

Qarl practically embodies the new Linden Lab mantra: Fast, Easy, Fun. (Although perhaps not in every single possible way that you could interpret that)

So, what’s Qarl up to next? Why, he’s getting laid off!

That’s right. Gone.

I’d like to say that this is an astonishingly daft thing to do, but I don’t have to. In just a few hours, almost everyone else will be saying it, I’m sure.

I can’t really bring myself to believe that this has anything to do with the mesh features that are in beta at the moment. If you want to reduce crash-rates and all sorts of lag in Second Life Qarl would be pretty much the first person you’d want to pick for the team.


Update: Codebastard Redgrave has set up an in-world memorial for Qarl.

Update: Indigo Mertel has started a petition to bring Qarl back.



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