Randy Farmer co-created Habitat, recognized as the first graphical virtual world. Over the last 30 years, he has helped companies like Lucasfilm, Electronic Arts, Linden Lab, Yahoo! and Answers.com to design better community products. On this episode, we discuss:
- Randy’s online community building efforts in the 1970s
- The importance of Habitat, and its recent revival
- Yahoo!’s acquisition of Flickr and what went on behind the scenes
Our transcript was not completed in time for the release of this episode. Once it is ready, we will update this post with quotes from the episode. Thank you for your patience.
About Randy Farmer
Randy Farmer has built online social systems almost continuously since high school in the 1970s, ultimately working at companies such as Lucasfilm Games, 3DO, Electronic Arts and Yahoo! He co-founded several startups, where he helped pioneer foundational technologies including avatars, virtual currencies, the JSON protocol, web apps, newsfeeds, futures and promises, amongst many others.
Randy’s most recent was Suddenly Social, which made real-time multi-user mobile games, who’s server tech was ultimately open sourced as Elko II. He is co-author of “Building Web Reputation Systems” (O’Reilly Media). He presently calls himself a social media product strategy consultant, advising dozens of companies on how to design and operate social-powered applications, from websites to mobile apps to games. As a side project, Randy leads a ragtag team on the NeoHabitat project, bringing back the first MMO/virtual world, Lucasfilm’s Habitat, after 30 years, as 100% open source.
This is an incomplete list of related links from this episode. Once we have finished our transcript, this list will be updated.
- Randy’s LinkedIn profile
- Wikipedia page for Habitat, co-created by Randy, recognized as the first graphical virtual world
- “Building Web Reputation Systems” by Randy and Bryce Glass
- NeoHabitat, the relaunch of Habitat
- The WELL, a pioneering online community
- Wikipedia page for LucasArts, for which Randy developed Habitat
- “Yahoo! Buys Photo Sharing Site Flickr” by Jim Hu for CNET
- Wikipedia page for Glitch, an online game designed by Flickr co-founder Stewart Butterfield
- Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn
- Randy’s Wikipedia page
- Building Web Reputation Systems, the companion blog to the book Randy co-authored
- Cachepix, a solution for those who would like to download their photos from popular image hosting services, which Randy is working on
Unfortunately, our transcript was not finished before it was time to release this episode. Once it is ready, this post will be updated. Sorry for the delay.
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