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Virtual Reality Pioneer John Carmack Is Leaving Meta

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Virtual reality tech pioneer John Carmack is leaving Meta after more than eight years at the company, according to an internal post seen by The New York Times.

In a post written by Mr. Carmack, 52, a technician criticized his employer. He said Meta, which is in the process of transitioning from a social networking company to one focused on the immersive world of the Metaverse, operates at “half efficiency” and attracts “a tremendous amount of people. We have resources, but we always – sabotage and wasting efforts.”

“It’s been a struggle for me,” Carmack wrote in a post published on an internal forum this week. “I have the highest level of voice here, so I feel like I should be able to move things around, but I’m clearly not compelling enough.”

As the former CTO of virtual reality company Oculus, which Facebook acquired in 2014 for $2 billion, Carmack was one of the most influential voices leading the development of VR headsets. He remained at Facebook after CEO Mark Zuckerberg shifted the company to focus on the Metaverse last year, renaming Facebook to Meta.

But even though Meta was rapidly moving into Carmack’s field of expertise, Carmack sometimes disagreed with the progress of the effort. He became known for internal posts criticizing the decision-making and direction of Zuckerberg and his Meta Chief Technology Officer, Andrew Bosworth. Mr. Carmack worked part-time at the company for several years.

Carmack and Mehta did not respond to requests for comment.insider previously reported About the departure of Mr. Carmack.

Meta’s revenue has been hit hard by Metaverse spending and slowing growth in social networking and digital advertising. In July, the Silicon Valley company became the first public company to record a decline in sales. Last month, Meta announced it would lay off about 11,000 employees, or about 13% of its workforce. This represents the company’s most significant layoff.

and podcast interview In August, Carmack said Meta’s then $10 billion loss in the division that houses its augmented and virtual reality initiatives made him “disgusted in my stomach.” ‘s Metaverse efforts have been hampered by bureaucracy and plagued by concerns about diversity and privacy, he added.

In another post seen by The Times earlier this year, Carmack criticized the capabilities of the company’s Quest virtual reality headset. In a farewell post, he praised his Quest 2 headset for its cost and mobile his hardware “almost like what I wanted to see from the beginning”, but was still critical of the software. did.

“We built something pretty close to The Right Thing,” he said.

Carmack’s post about ending his decade in VR ended by saying he was “tired of fighting” and focused on his startup. (He said in August that his artificial intelligence company, Keen Technologies, Raises $20 million.)

“VR can bring value to most people in the world, and no company is better positioned to do it than Meta,” he wrote.

Prior to Meta, Carmack developed various techniques in computer graphics that became important to the games he developed, including Quake. He joined Oculus in 2013 as Chief Technology Officer and stepped down from that position in 2019 to take up a part-time role.

Mr. Carmack testifying again this week At a court hearing over the Federal Trade Commission’s attempt to block Meta’s acquisition of Within, the virtual reality startup behind the fitness game called Supernatural. If allowed to do so, it would wipe out competition in the nascent metaverse.

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