WTF More layoffs at LL - Kona gone

Caliandris

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Sid

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Someone at LL should have the balls to close down the Sansar project.
LL has gambled that the goggles would become mainstream. That did not happen and there are very few signals that justify the idea that it will happen any time soon.
Sansar is a niche product by itself (as all virtual worlds are) and it depends completely on a niche gadget (the goggles). It is simple: that will not take off.
LL should concentrate on their only cash producing product.
As long as they keep trowing money at their dead horse, I agree that it is possible that the Sansar failure takes SL down with it in it's fall, as well.
 

Fionalein

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Someone at LL should have the balls to close down the Sansar project.
LL has gambled that the goggles would become mainstream.
They might be invested too much to can afford loosing the gamble. My big fear is that they are already a dead company and we just watch them now fighting the inevitable.

There was little hope for the goggles in the beginning - they are way more clumsy than the 3DTV/3DMonitor devices that failed before them. Asides a few visionary projects and games most VR would have been better handled with a specialized desktop rigs and 3D glasses... I honesty cannot see a future where users are buying those cumbersome devices en masse.

As for Kona... the staff that switched to Sansar gambled too. LL might be better off dropping some bad apples in the SL team and retaining some of the talented folks from Sansar... but hey it is LL - while I usually state we have no idea what goes on behind closed company doors and there might be unknown reasons for strange decisions and we therefore we have no right to claim "I would have handled this smarter"... nope not at LL - over there bad decisions seem to be a business philosophy in itself!
 
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Wesleytron

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LL has gambled that the goggles would become mainstream. it depends completely on a niche gadget (the goggles).
Is that right though? Is Sansar dependent on VR goggles? I've never checked out Sansar, but I got the impression you can log in and explore without a VR headset. And even if they are essential, I would imagine it would be a fairly easy task to make it non-dependent, so I think the 'it needs goggles' is a scapegoat for its failure.

If Sansar is a failure, then I don't think it's because of some perceived dependency on VR headsets. It's failed for other reasons. Of which I'm sure there are plenty.
 

Sid

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If Sansar is a failure,
Well, they are open for more than two years now and their concurrency is mostly somewhere 30-ish as far as I know.
That is nothing more than a failure in my book.
 

Fionalein

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Ebbe the man with a plan said:
So, I’m only going to say this tonight as it’s late. We can pick up the conversation in the following days. Yes, there were layoffs today. A truly wonderful group of people. But as you can see Sansar is up and running. We are still in discussion about next steps. Including with the wonderful group of people. More to come. Don’t give up yet. Go create and have fun. Not much point in speculating until we can tell you more.
(emphasis mine)
Is he picking up the Donnie's speech patterns now?
 

Wesleytron

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Well, they are open for more than two years now and their concurrency is mostly somewhere 30-ish as far as I know.
That is nothing more than a failure in my book.
Yeah.. I was just trying to be a little diplomatic :p
 
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Argent Stonecutter

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Is that right though? Is Sansar dependent on VR goggles? I've never checked out Sansar, but I got the impression you can log in and explore without a VR headset.
Technically, but the controls are awful. I couldn't find a way to turn my avatar on the desktop other than dragging with a mouse, for example. I could fall into a fairly shallow pit and be completely unable to get out of it. The whole thing was a mess.
 

Fionalein

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Technically, but the controls are awful. I couldn't find a way to turn my avatar on the desktop other than dragging with a mouse, for example. I could fall into a fairly shallow pit and be completely unable to get out of it. The whole thing was a mess.
Aha, did not know this. Never got around to try it either, as the brainwashing Ebbe received during his time as a Microsoft drone made him dump all OSes but Win for his brainchild.
 
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Caliandris

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Technically, but the controls are awful. I couldn't find a way to turn my avatar on the desktop other than dragging with a mouse, for example. I could fall into a fairly shallow pit and be completely unable to get out of it. The whole thing was a mess.
I went and had a look, and was persuaded by other, more enthusiastic friends to give it a go, investing in some building bits and objects to try my hand at it. I'm an experienced builder in SL but I found the non-goggle controls almost impossible to use. It was difficult to locate things, and the cursor control obscured smaller things - something that I am told is cured in later versions. It was painful to build, painful to move and had none of the fun or community of SL.

I really tried hard. I'm not sure whether it is very much easier with VR goggles, but after SL I found it like trying to build with boxing gloves and one hand behind my back. I tried exploring but even moving wasn't easy to do and in some sims movement itself seemed to have been shackled in some way. I didn't find anything that wasn't just a staged bit of scenery. It wasn't immersive in the slightest.

It may struggle on, but if the developers have been fired, it's hard to see how it can continue for long. Even the people enthusiastic about it conceded that it was still in beta testing and that it needed a couple of years of development to be ready - a timescale I don't think LL have *ever* worked to, for anything. They usually want the new thing and want it now.

I'm hoping the company will see that their income stream and future lies in SL, but I'm feeling less optimistic about the future, frankly.
 
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Sid

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We can do very little more than wait and see, I guess.
In the 2007-2012 period it would have been a total disaster for me to find an Out Of Business sign on the SL gates. I was totally addicted... eh .... engaged with SL.
Now I would feel sad, but not panic as I certainly would have in the earlier years of my SL career.

The more I think about the lay offs and the text that Fionalein posted about Ebbe, I think it is more likely that we will see a For Sale Sign on the SL/LL gates in the near future.
 
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Luisa Land

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just posted at SL-community-forum


mmmh does this sound convincing?
 
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Casey Pelous

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Gosh, getting canned at LL sounds positively nice euphemistic! They don't fire you, or lay you off, they just say goodbye. Adorable!

One presumes there's also that whole awkward, "and they stop paying you" part, as well.
 

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Is that right though? Is Sansar dependent on VR goggles? I've never checked out Sansar, but I got the impression you can log in and explore without a VR headset. And even if they are essential, I would imagine it would be a fairly easy task to make it non-dependent, so I think the 'it needs goggles' is a scapegoat for its failure.

If Sansar is a failure, then I don't think it's because of some perceived dependency on VR headsets. It's failed for other reasons. Of which I'm sure there are plenty.
I logged in on the desktop version exactly once and was incredibly not impressed.

i wandered around some jungle, there was, I think one other person standing there, not doing anything. I wanted around some weird art exhibit that looked like some kind of frozen stage play. I wandered around a Star Wars museum that mounted to a bunch of props on pedestals. I was surrpised that Ic ould pick up the props and throw them on the floor.

It all just felt like a weird, lifeless version of Second Life. And that's coming from someone who often interacts with no one when logging into Second Life. Though even when I don't directly interact, there are groups chattering on about whatever to drop in and out of.
 

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I visited Sansar once or twice a long time ago. It was interesting to see, with impressive graphics, but locations took ages to load and it was difficult to see what one could do in Sansar that couldn't be done in SL. Looking at snapshots of Sansar on Google now, they don't look any better than a well made SL environment.
I just hope LL has some tech 'take-away' from the Sansar experiment that can be used to improve SL.
 
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Sid

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I just hope LL has some tech 'take-away' from the Sansar experiment that can be used to improve SL.
That would be nice indeed.
But the way LL implements stuff, and given the rumors about the spaghetti state of parts of the SL code, I have not too high hopes.
 

Fionalein

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I just hope LL has some tech 'take-away' from the Sansar experiment that can be used to improve SL.
Maybe animesh was one of those, maybe EEP will be...

That would be nice indeed.
But the way LL implements stuff, and given the rumors about the spaghetti state of parts of the SL code, I have not too high hopes.
As a trained HPC specialist I can tell you spaghetti code is not inherently bad. It is highly effective but difficult to maintain (there is always a cost). AFAIK SL started it's first fetal steps as HPC simulation of oceanic waves. If that is true, I am not very surprised to find spaghetti code at it's base, in HPC we want to maximise machine effectivity, human readability of the code is a secondary concern at best. Documentation is found in our lab journals (and to some extent in the comments).

The problem I percieve here is that I expect 3D gaming programmers to program in the much higher overhead object oriented paradigms. On top of that LSL needs handling an event driven language in a virtual machine running on the spaghetti code base. Getting those 3 programming paradigms working effectively together was short of a miracle, and an ability LL seems to have lost since it's early days...
 
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