Future of Mesh Import Uncertain with Firing of Qarl Linden

I read with dismay today on New World Notes about the firing of Qarl Linden, Karl Stiefvater. Karl disclosed his firing on his website, “Well, linden lab cut me loose today. They’ve been hinting at it ever since the layoffs last month. Try as i might i wasn’t able to change their minds. Honestly, I’m completely baffled at the decision, as are all my coworkers (and my boss, and…)”

It is unclear why he was fired. Tateru Nino posted a quote from his last performance review of July 2010 on Dwell on It indicating that the man is a software genius doing a great job. “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. 23 July 2010 – Q210 Manager Review” Apparently the source of this quote is Qarl’s website, www.qarl.com.

From New World Notes, “Qarl was a leading force behind Second Life sculpties, a groundbreaking building method, and more recently, COLLADA-compatible meshes, a feature currently in closed Beta. Meshes were promised to come to Second Life proper this quarter, but with Karl gone from Linden Lab, it’s unclear what that status is.”

I was hopeful that perhaps an open beta of mesh import was imminent when not long ago Linden Lab lifted the non-disclosure agreement permitting some information from those in the closed beta test of mesh to slip out. See my previous entry here.

The end of Q2 has come and gone, and Linden Labs has been silent on the topic of mesh import. With the firing of Qarl Linden, I am now not only thinking that mesh import will not come soon, but wondering if it will come at all.

Philip, it is time to tell us something! Don’t leave us hanging. Too many of us are excited about the potential of mesh import.

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