Shortly after we received Philip Rosedale's official statement on Cory Ondrejka's imminent departure from Linden Lab, a source close to Linden Lab passed us a copy of Ondrejka's internal email about the matter.
Trying to sum up 7 years of work at Linden is an impossible task. All nighters at the Linden Street office. Gaining 20 pounds but then losing 70. Flying 350,000 miles on Linden travel. Recruiting and hiring many of you. Creating a programming language that now had 2.5 billion lines of code written in it – note to self, next time spend more than one night designing language. Changing the world.
It has been an absolute thrill working with all of you on Second Life. When Philip looked across a rickety card table in November of 2000 and told me that we would do more than build a great product, we needed to build a great company, too, I knew it would be a wild ride. Through the peaks and the valleys, Philip's ideas challenged and inspired me. They often led to solutions I would never have considered and helped to make Second Life what it is today.
I continue to believe in both Second Life and Linden Lab, but Philip and my visions for the future of Linden Lab are divergent enough that he decided to lead in his own way. While I will miss all of you, I have confidence in engineering - in all of you - to adapt and excel going forward. You are a phenomenal collection of talents and I know that both Linden Lab and Second Life will be hugely successful.
Ondrejka is obviously being sensitive, proud and diplomatic. It also gives the impression of 'fired' rather than 'quit', but he's definitely going out in style, as a leader. This is a classic 'creative differences' situation, and Ondrejka's handling it very professionally, with positive messages, reinforcement and motivation.
Although, if I was on the engineering team under Cory right now - sure - I'd be feeling a bit panicked at this juncture. That's the vibe we're picking up at the moment. This is, perhaps, one of the most significant changes at Linden Lab in years, and it would be ridiculous to think that there won't be fallout from it.