Ebbe Altberg joins Linden Lab as CEO

LL logoPeter Gray has just informed me that on Wednesday February 5th, the board of directors of Linden Lab formally announced the appointment of Ebbe Altberg as the company’s Chief Executive Officer.

The press release announcing his appointment reads in part:

SAN FRANCISCO — February 5, 2014 — Linden Lab®, the makers of Second Life®, BlocksworldTM, DesuraTM, and more, today announced that Ebbe Altberg will lead the company as its new Chief Executive Officer.

Ebbe Altberg (image courtesy of Linden Lab)

“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.”

The appointment brings to an end almost two weeks of silence on the matter of the CEO position, following Rod Humble’s surprise announcement that he had departed the company, which was made via his Facebook account, and the news broken by Jo Yardley on January 24th, 2014.

Seminar on current and future practice in using VWs in higher education

On Friday March 14th, the University of Manchester in the UK will host a one-day seminar entitled Reviewing current and future practice in the use of virtual worlds in Higher Education.

The event,  which is being organised by Gary Motteram, a Senior Lecturer in Education at the university, will explore the current state of the art in the use of virtual worlds in education and will be a mixture of face-to-face presentations and online activity.

Presentations will be made by Dr. Paul Rudman, a Research Associate at the Institute of Learning Innovation at the University of Leicester; Dr. Darren Mundy, a Senior Lecturer in Digital Media, and Luisa Panichi, a Research Student at the School of Languages, Linguistics & Cultures, University of Hull; Professor Maggi Savin-Baden, Professor of Higher Education Research, University of Coventry; and Professor Liz Falconer, Director, Education Innovation Centre at the University of West England.

Additionally, there will be a special presentation from the Euroversity Network Project partners, a network of 18 European (and Israeli!) universities with significant experience of the use of 2D/3D virtual worlds in learning and teaching contexts, and the day will wrap with a speakers’ panel.

The seminar is free to attend, either in person at Manchester University (please register your intent to attend via the Eventbrite webpage), or via on-line streaming through the Euroversity website. Lunch will be provided for those attending in person.

The seminar will take place at the Kanaris Lecture Theatre, Manchester Museum, University of Manchester, Friday, 14 March 2014 from 09:30 to 16:30 (GMT)

Programme Schedule

At the time of writing, the full schedule for the seminar comprised (all times GMT):

  • 09.30 – Participants arrive (Coffee/ Tea available)
  • 10.00 – Opening introduction and welcome
  • 10.10 – Paul Rudman (University of Leicester): Seven reasons for teaching in virtual worlds
  • 11.00 – Darren Mundy and Luisa Panichi (University of Hull): Virtual courses (Online Presentation)
  • 11.45 – Coffee/ Tea Break
  • 12.00 – Maggi Savin-Baden (University of Coventry): The impact of virtual world learning on Higher Education
  • 12.45 — Lunch and networking
  • 13.30 – Liz Falconer (University of West England): Learning in virtual environments: dimensions of situated learning
  • 14.15 – Virtual session: Euroversity Network Project partners
  • 15.00 – Coffee/ Tea break
  • 15.15 – Final panel (joint on-line and face-to-face)
  • 16.00 – End of day

For up-to-date information on the schedule and activities, please refer to the event’s Eventbrite web page. Further information can be obtained by interested parties contacting Gary Motteram directly via e-mail.

SL projects news 6/1: Server, viewer, SSA and AIS project viewer

Simulator User Group meeting, Tuesday February 4th
Simulator User Group meeting, Tuesday February 4th

Server Deployments: week 6

As always, please refer to the server deployment thread in the forums for the latest updates / changes.

Main (SLS) Channel

On Tuesday February 4th, the Main channel received the server maintenance package previously on the three RC channels, which includes a crash mode fix and a fix for llModifyLand() modifying the wrong location in region, when called in a child prim.

Speaking at the Server Beta meeting on Thursday January 23rd, Maestro Linden described this fix thus:

For example, if a child prim is offset by <8,4,0> from the root prim, then calling that function in the child prim will try to modify the terrain at <8,4,0>  of the region,  which may or may not work depending on who owns the parcel.

The fix is to make it modify the land underneath the child prim (which of course follows the same permissions rules – you can only modify land owned by the script owner.

Release Candidate Channels

On Wednesday February 5th, all three RCs should receive a new server maintenance package, which includes a crash fix.

SL Viewer Updates

Google Breakpad

Google Breakpad reappeared in the viewer release channel as an RC (version, dated January 29th) on February 4th. As per usual, the RC does not contain any functional changes or updates, but contains a Google Breakpad updates and restructures the crash reporting mechanism to support out of process crash reporting. These changes will give the development team more call stacks from crashes more frequently, to improve the triaging and debugging of issues.

HTTP Viewer

The HTTP RC gained a further update on Monday, February 3rd, with the release of  version, although it had been anticipated this viewer might update to the de facto release viewer this week.

AIS v3

The Server-side Appearance “polish” and AIS v3 project viewer, version was released on Tuesday February 4th. In terms of SSA This includes:

  • Stability and performance improvements for SSA: retry logic, removing redundant requests, detecting various appearance stuck conditions.
  • Code cleanup with the removal of a lot of code related to the old client-side baking framework.
  • Bug fixes, mostly appearance-related
  • Support for AIS v3 (which requires server-side updates.

For more information, see my announcement of the release.

Group Ban Lists

Baker Linden continues to work on Group Ban Lists, commenting at the Simulator User Group meeting on Tuesday February 4th that, “I’m finally finished with (what I think is) the major viewer side changes, so I’ll be getting everything ready this week for a deploy hopefully in the next upcoming weeks, so be ready to test the crap out of group bans on Aditi soon!”