Linden Lab

Linden Lab is a U.S. company from San Francisco, California and operator of the 3D simulation world Second Life.

Was founded in 1999 by Linden Lab Philip Rosedale, the former CTO of RealNetworks. The company is similar to the first address of the company, Linden Alley in Hayes Valley. Rosedale in 1995 had already developed video compression software ( FreeVue ), was involved in the development of RealVideo and sought since his contact with the Internet in the mid 1990s, then to create the virtual simulation of a world in which the participants in an arbitrarily customizable three-dimensional environment free customizable avatars can freely interact in real-time animation (Real time 3D streaming). He has invested up to 2001 about 1 million U.S. dollars in a relevant project from its own resources.

The most important result of the development work, the 3D simulation world Second Life, whose public beta test began in October 2002 and is online since June 2003 arose. In April 2003, Mitch Kapor partner and chairman of the company. Since initially hired not a commercial success beyond the pure financing paid memberships, there were no other investors. The end of 2003, the workforce shrank from 31 employees to 20

At the end of 2003, trading activities in Second Life on the convertibility of the virtual currency Linden dollars to U.S. dollars in the regular business cycle were included. Linden dollars can thus be a relatively fixed exchange rate to buy and sell. The looming revenue within this miniature economy aroused the interest of investors, including Omidyar Network since 2004, the company founder Pierre Omidyar of eBay, and since a further capital increase in 2006, the CEO of, Jeff Bezos.

Linden Lab is funded since then over paid premium memberships of Second Life users, with a commission in the exchange of virtual currency and in particular ( in January 2007, allegedly to 70%) through the sale of virtual land in Second Life, where members own objects can build (buildings, interiors, environments ). In addition, each comes a monthly lease, must pay the " land owners ". The " gross national product" of this virtual miniature economy was in early 2007 at a monthly about 10 million U.S. dollars. The revenue and membership growth within the virtual world run by Linden Lab was estimated at the time at around 20 % per month.

According to the USA Today dated 5 February 2007, Linden Lab has approximately 140 employees, of whom 28 are engineers.

The Company has made the client software for Second Life now under an open source license. In January 2007 Linden Lab also announced to want to change their main revenue segment ( sale of virtual land in Second Life) fundamentally.

In September 2012, Linden Lab has introduced two new products: Creator verses ( for iPad) and Patterns ( desktop application).

In July 2013, Linden Lab acquired the digital games distribution platform Desura.