Palmer Luckey, the co-founder of Oculus VR and designer of the Oculus Rift, is stepping down from his position at the company.

Oculus told Upload VR the news, saying that it will be Luckey’s last week at the Facebook-owned VR headset company.

“Palmer will be dearly missed. Palmer’s legacy extends far beyond Oculus. His inventive spirit helped kickstart the modern VR revolution and helped build an industry. We’re thankful for everything he did for Oculus and VR, and we wish him all the best.”

The result of a record-breaking US$2.4 million Kickstarter campaign, Oculus went on to produce two VR headset developer kits, dubbed Oculus Rift DK1 (released in March 2013) and Rift DK2 (released in July 2014)—devices upon which prospective developers could create VR games and experiences that would eventually populate the Oculus Home store. The two headsets, the direct result of Luckey’s efforts, would go on to kickstart an entire industry.

oculus-rift-dk2-vs-dk1-gdc-2014
Rift DK1 (left), Rift DK2 (right)

Oculus then went on to be acquired by Facebook in March 2014 for US$3 billion, an event that culminated in the launch of the first consumer-level VR headset for the company in March 2016—the Oculus Rift. As a result, Forbes Magazine estimated Luckey’s net worth to exceed US$700 million.

After the acquisition, Luckey however settled into somewhat of an undefined position at the company, oftentimes playing the boisterous, flip flop-wearing front man of the organization when he wasn’t working with the team to develop Oculus Touch, the platform’s natural motion input controller.

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ross-palmer-rift-alaske-featured
Palmer Luckey hand-delivering the first Oculus Rift to pre-order customer #1 in Alaska

In September 2016 Luckey shied away from the spotlight following community and developer backlash to his association with a polarizing political group Nimble America, which was involved in funding a billboard campaign against Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate for the US presidential election.

After the news was out and confirmed by Luckey himself to be true that he was secretly providing funds to the pro-Donald Trump non-profit organization, he went into nearly complete radio silence, stopping all activity on Twitter—unusual for Luckey considering how openly he interfaced with the developers and fans on the social platform.

In December 2016, it was said he would be taking on a new role after ex-CEO Brendan Iribe stepped down to take lead of Facebook’s PC VR division, Oculus confirmed to The Verge, but no verifiable information came out as to exactly where he landed in the company.

Based on a photo courtesy Dallas News
Based on a photo courtesy Dallas News

Earlier this year Luckey found himself the subject (and defendant) in a prominent lawsuit between ZeniMax and Facebook/Oculus centered on an alleged misappropriation of intellectual property (i.e. the Oculus Rift) that ZeniMax says was disclosed under the sanctity of a nondisclosure agreement. A bitter pill to swallow: the lawsuit resulted in a $500 million award to ZeniMax.

Luckey’s absence from Oculus comes nearly on the one-year anniversary of the launch of the consumer Oculus Rift. What’s next for the 24-year old near-billionaire is uncertain at this time.

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  • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea
    • Justos

      Great news! Now this idiot can go away!

  • Brad

    I have to imagine that after the aquisition, and Facebook hired the best hardware designers and scientists that money could buy, that there wasn’t much for a self-taught hacker/maker to do. However, I have to wonder if the whole Trump thing (that wasn’t really a trump thing at all, it was just anti-Clinton) didn’t have something to do with his leaving. It sucks that that’s the world we live in. I remember when the Mozilla CEO got ousted for donating money to a political cause. Not great times for free speech.

    • Jim Cherry

      All actions have consequences even those actions on the anonymous web. At least no ones getting physically lynched yet.

      • “yet” If the Liberal Fascists keep it up, the election upset will be the least of their problems. Because once the un-Civil War escalates, the Conservative Right will wipe every single one of those who are hell bent on destroying our Constitutional Republic from the face of the planet!

        • Get Schwifty!

          Its ultimately more a problem of being “bred out” than I think an upcoming un-civil war; “progressives”, due to their inherently selfish nature have some of the lowest reproductive rates of any group or ideology. As time is passing their ideas are losing influence in the world, though we are at a point in time where “the tide has just started to go out” so it is hard to see unless you look closely.

          • MdM

            Progressives are inherently selfish in nature? You must be a 1%er.

          • Get Schwifty!

            No not really. Think about it, every motivation by a self-proclaimed “progressive” is do what they, and they alone think is best for their personal freedom, to the point they will use violence and intimidation if necessary to get what they want, at least now. There is no real toleration for opposing views and few limits on the self, and while the lifestyle tends on the surface to support others, in reality it is most directed at the self, _reflected in others_. In the end it’s a belief system that is directed by what the self wants regardless of others and their different views, it’s not truly tolerant unless it controls what toleration means, essentially for things that are for the most part superfluous and that’s the problem.

            The low birth rate issue is a very telling sign of the ultimate effect of unchecked liberal tendencies, which is all about the self, even short-circuiting the need to live for others in a loving relationship where the self is sublimated to the life of another. Not sure how observing that fact makes me a hater :)

          • MdM

            I *am* thinking about it, but it doesn’t make sense… I’m a self-proclaimed progressive, but I’ve never once resorted to violence, ever. I make very good money, but I’m usually in favor of more socialistic constructs like free public education and universal healthcare, as well as programs to help people in need and those below the poverty line. Those things take money from my pocket to provide a service that benefits others more than myself. How is that selfish? Seems like the conservatives that want to give tax breaks to the rich, exclude large groups of people from enjoying the benefits of our great country, and take away programs that benefit those in need… They’re the selfish ones.

            Interesting though that when I said “1%er”, you equated that to “hater”. Huh.

          • Nimblerichman

            Shwiffty, where did you get your statistics about “progressive reproductive rates” from? I thought this was a vr focused discussion about the fact that Palmer Luckey has abandoned Oculus. Why did you change the subject?

        • Foreign Devil

          People like this make me think Civil war is not unlikely in USA. . I’ve never seen a nation so divided. Looking in from the outside.

          • Get Schwifty!

            The reality is most people are essentially good, but apathetic, too busy in their work lives to really care (look at the percentage of possible voters vs turnout). OTOH, there is a vocal 20% or so, roughly evenly divided on the far left and far right that are driving a lot of the discourse, doing stupid shit like rioting at the drop of a hat and so on, so it appears there is great division because their politics are so radially apart. Most people in the U.S. are socially liberal within bounds, but fiscally conservative, and neither party really supports these as precepts.

          • Foreign Devil

            Well I should probably not get my impressions about US citizens from their comments on news articles and Youtube then. ..because from those comments they all seem very extreme. But sometimes I think anonymity, like alcohol brings out their true feelings.

          • WyrdestGeek

            I think anonymity brings out *different* feelings.

            Is a person’s id *more* of a true self than their civilized self they portray most of the time?

            If yes, then why do we even bother pretending to be civilized?

            Oh maybe because working at jobs is generally more productive and more likely to result in a longer life expectancy than just living like brutal animals is likely to do.

            Which version of someone is “true”? IMHO, they both are. It all depends on what environment you plop someone into.

        • MdM

          Damn, that’s pretty dramatic.

          I’m a liberal, and a majority of my friends are liberals. I go to work every day just like you. I come home everyday and spend time with my family (presumably) just like you.

          So, what exactly are me and my friends doing that warrants us being called fascist and being wiped from the face of the planet?

          I’m thinking that you’re really referring to a very small percentage of far-left liberals that have said and done some things that you don’t like. And presumably the biased conservative media you watch has convinced you that every single liberal in the country are doing these things. Stop being brainwashed.

        • Andrew Jakobs

          oh please, the lefties are just as hell bent on destroying our constitutional rights, as they want to take my money and give it to others (oh, but they do want to keep all money to themselves).
          Right is bad AND Left is bad, Middle is the way to go..

      • Get Schwifty!

        Take heart in the fact unchecked Liberalism is actually fading, its high point has passed demographically. Even half the Millennials are smart enough to see the flaw in ideas taken too far…

    • It’s just fuel for a fire the Left-Wing lights under themselves. Nobody appreciates being threatened for their beliefs. You’d think they’d remember this from McCarthyism.

      • user

        ya. because funding trolls on the internet is free speech, right? youve never been the brightest here but at least try.

        • Ben

          To be fair though the Clinton’s spent millions themselves on trolls with “Correct the Record” staff being paid to post everywhere. Neither side should do it but it’s fairly imbalanced when Twitter/Youtube/Google/Facebook/Apple/Reddit all self censor popular right wing information that doesn’t break any clear regulations anyway.

        • Nigerian Wizard

          “Everybody for trump is a troll” is what your post can be reduced to. Dont’ be an idiot.

        • I am actually laughing at your comment. You gave me a good chuckle. A guy, with poor grammar, who likes to anonymously insult others, talking about the evils of being a Troll. Maybe you should name yourself “Irony” instead of “user”?

          You’re trolling aside, legitimately, people should be able to say what they please, and this is doubly important when it comes to politics. Political debate only becomes corrupted when people’s voices are silenced. There is no more evil or terrible an opinion then the desire to bar others from expression.

      • Nimblerichman

        Walter, how do you know this has anything to do with politics?
        Maybe Palmer was fired from Oculus for another reason or maybe he just abandoned ship because he doesn’t believe in the future of the company.

    • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea

      Are you talking about Brendan Eich? The political cause that he donated to was for the opposition of gay marriage. Mozilla: “Hi. We’re Mozilla, the proudly non-profit champions of the Internet, helping to keep it healthy, open and accessible to all.” Accessible to all. See the problem there Brad?

      As for Oculus, I think Facebook should drop the Oculus brand altogether.

      • Brad

        No, I really don’t see the problem there. What does someone’s personal belief about marriage have to do with the function of an internet browser? Absolutely nothing. They fired him because of pressure from people who are perpetually offended about things that have nothing to do with them.

      • Andrew Jakobs

        Except, and that’s what you f-ing moron can’t understand, it’s not the company, but he did it on his personal title.. And the last time I heard, we still got free speech, and that also means if you are against gay marriage you can say so, free speech doesn’t mean you can only say stuff mister ‘iThinkMyCatIsAFlea’ thinks is ok.. (and no, I don’t give a rats ass about gay marriage, everybody should be free to do what he/she likes in that regard, the world is already a shitplace enough)..
        And because a moron like you keeps thinking the Oculus brand is tainted because Luckey donated some money on his personal title to a group you don’t support, doesn’t mean everybody thinks that, hell most people don’t even know about it, and a lot of other don’t even care about it..
        And again with Mozilla, you do exactly the same thing, connect a whole company to something an individual did without ANY relation to the company, if he said he doesn’t want gays in his company than it would be a whole different matter.. But morons like you aren’t smart enough to understand it.

        You’re the one who is soo closeminded that you are even worse than what you accuse Luckey and Eich for.. People like you are the ones who actually limit others in their freedom, but that’s no problem to you as long as others do what YOU think is good..

        • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea

          I’m not accusing Eich of anything. It’s a fact that he was opposed to gay marriage. Google the tale of Eich and gay marriage.

          • Andrew Jakobs

            Yes, it’s a fact that he was opposed to gay marriage, but there was no indication that he did anything against gays in his company or with his company.. So it was purely on his personal title.. Because you don’t have anything against gay marriages, doesn’t mean others aren’t allowed to have something against it.. as I said, if there is anybody who is close/narrowminded, than it’s you, you don’t give other people the right to their own opinion, and keeps pushing your agenda in every single oculus thread.. saying once you dislike luckey, it’s ok, but in every single oculus thread, it’s not.

        • Nimblerichman

          Was Luckey fired for his political views? If so, Facebook are truly bastards.

    • Nimblerichman

      Hard to believe that Facebook would fire Palmer Luckey for supporting and funding his own personal political views unless such views were extremely inappropriate and offensive (eg:racism). Also hard to believe he would get fired because of lack of technical expertise so I think you’re wrong about both of those. I don’t think he abandoned Oculus and quit after all the hard work and recognition either. Seems like he’s suddenly hiding from the public eye these last few months so there must be a better reason that Palmer Luckey said goodbye to Oculus and Facebook isn’t sharing that with us.

    • WyrdestGeek

      Free speech is expensive. Maybe before funding an anti-Clinton “shitposting” org, it might be worth it to ask oneself “is this really a good use of my money?” “Do I strongly believe in this? Is it worth getting in hot water over?”

      All the snowflake whiners complaining about a lack of free speech. But really they want to be able to say any crazy-mouthed claptrap they can think of and never, ever face any consequences.

      That was never what “free speech” meant. It just meant that people, especially the government, aren’t allowed to silence or kill you just for saying things they don’t like.

      • Brad

        “All the snowflake whiners complaining about a lack of free speech.”

        The term “snowflake” refers to people who try to shut down free speech (i.e. riot and protest when someone comes to their campus with a different point of view), now people who “whine” about the lack thereof.

        And I agree that it’s not the government shutting down free speech, it is society (ourselves), but I don’t know if that’s better or worse.

        • WyrdestGeek

          If an eight year old boy at a dinner table attempts to tell an inappropriate joke, the parents of the child might tell him, politely, to shut the hell up.

          Such a terrible abuse of their power. They should let the little kid keep saying horrible stuff.

    • DougP

      Re: “Not great times for free speech.”

      WTF?! Seriously – W-T-F?

      It amazes me the people don’t understand what “free speech” even means.

      Couple of things to educate yourself on:
      1) People are not *free* from repercussions from those responding with their own speech
      2) People “voting with their dollars” by boycotting/threatening boycott or even requesting ousting of public facing corporate representatives … are exercising their own “free speech” – just because you don’t agree with them does not make it a bad time for free speech.

      Re: “It sucks that that’s the world we live in.”
      Sucks living in a world all full of all that “free speech”, eh?

      Sounds like you’re one of those, like so many misguided US politicians exposing their ignorance, who only celebrates “free speech” when it’s speech you agree with!

      • Brad

        Dude. Calm down. “Free Speech” was probably the wrong term, since the term free speech refers specifically to being able to speak out and not be punished by the government. In this case it is not the government that is punishing people, but our society as a whole.

        What you you call it when a speaker can’t go to a college campus without the students protesting or even rioting? What would you call it when you get your life destroyed for expressing an opinion or even making a joke on twitter? Maybe it’s called outrage culture. Maybe it’s just called leftism. Whatever it’s called, it sucks.

    • Perseus Smith

      The times of accepting the artist because of the art are over. It’s a whole package, and it seemed his subscribed ideologies weren’t compatible with silicon valley.

  • RipVoid

    Hopefully he starts another VR company that stays true to his vision for VR.

  • CURTROCK

    Palmer Luckey single handedly re-ignited the VR revolution, after it stagnated for over 20 years. Few people are fortunate enough to have a legacy as far reaching & groundbreaking as Palmer. He created RIFT. Good luck, Palmer. Thank you for all you have done. Please ignore the TURDS & INSECTS who know not of what they speak.

    • Guest

      He took the worst, failed ideas from over 20 years ago, repeated the same mistakes, and companies like Google, Facebook, and Sony did the same, and now they all say they have to do more research to stop motion sickness!

    • Nairobi

      You give him far too much credit for VR. He was the right man at the right time for VR. He was only a VR hobbyist and did not do much actual hardware or software engineering outside of very small mods to games and buying lots of failed VR headsets. After his successful kickstarter, the big companies took the steering wheel from his hands. He wasn’t an HR manager, an engineer, or even a philosopher, so he stuck with PR, the company mascot. And not a very good one either. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was kicked off of Facebook. Or bribed with Scooby Snacks.

      • Jeff

        Agreed. People seem to be really attached to hero worship. Palmer deserves his credit ($700 million should more than suffice I imagine), but what about all of the forgotten kick-starter backers? Didn’t they play a rather large role in re-igniting the VR revolution? What about all the devs who produced the content? What about the long, long line of people who came before and will come after? Its all just a bit much for my taste. If he was so important to VR he will continue to be moving forward. We will see if that’s the case or not, but I doubt it.

        • Joe Banes

          Sure they did, but pretending that Palmer was “only a hobbyist” is giving him too little credit. I heard him speak once in an impromptu hall mugging at one of the smaller VR conferences. He had no “handlers” around him, just a group of VR enthusiasts, programmers, engineers, and I’m sure hobbyists. He was humble and he was very articulate and knowledgeable about VR, his devices in particular, the challenges and how Oculus was trying to overcome them, with the added caveat that he wanted other companies to be successful. Did he figure everything out on his own? Of course not. That rarely happens. He found partners, some, perhaps even many of which, were smarter than him (and you and me probably too) and he pushed this thing forward. Companies like Oculus rarely get noticed by someone as big as Facebook if it’s a one man show. Of course Palmer couldn’t do it on his own, but the kickstarter backers created nothing also. They supported with money which I don’t think anyone at Oculus would deny was an important step. There are many people who are footnotes in the history of their technology (those who came before for instance. I know none of their names, but that doesn’t take away what they contributed to where we are now). I don’t personally hero worship the guy, he’s just a man, but he had a vision and that vision (whether he needed help to make it happen or not is not relevant) was important to where we are now. Yep, others will drive that vision forward and he may or may not be a part of it. How many things do we have because of “hobbyists” who were told their ideas were dumb? You didn’t come up with it? I didn’t come up with it and everyone before that failed. He succeeded, at least to a certain point. Nothing wrong with that. We love to knock people down these days. It’s kinda sad.

          @Nairobi, as to people coming and taking the steering wheel out of his hands, you have no basis in evidence to say that. You simply don’t know. You weren’t there. I don’t know either. I only know his place in this rendition of VR. He was at the Institute for Creative Technologies at USC. So to say he never did any engineering software or hardware wise is also something you can’t back up with evidence. That’s the Zenimax line cause they wanted a piece of the pie. Oh, he was homeschooled (irrelevant), he built HMDs in his garage (a hobbyist, also irrelevant, many a new thing has been started in a garage). No one says anyone should worship the guy, but to try and make him look like a buffoon who offered nothing useful to this is asinine and I don’t really get the need to tear him down. You can’t say someone is giving him far too much credit when you have no idea how much credit to give him. Now I will agree that saying he single-handedly did any of this is going a bit too far, lets not go the other direction and make him seem like some hobo who happened to be begging for coins at the right Starbucks.

          • Jeff

            Appreciate the thoughtful response. I would by no means call him ‘just a hobbyist’. I’m sure he, Iribe and other high ups at oculus worked very hard. However if you look at the hardware that came before and the consumer Rift which came after his solo work, it’s pretty clear nothing too groundbreaking happened in his garage. He was clearly in the right place at the right time(as well as talented). Others who failed before probably did so because they were simply too early. None of that discredits his work, and I have no need to tear down his years of passion and effort. I just have a distaste for the notion that he alone was so important, especially when a Kickstarter (crowd funding) and crowd sourcing played such a huge role. I’m a huge fan of Howard Zinn’s ‘Peoples History’ perspective and it makes me sad that a great story of collaboration like this one gets turned into the Palmer Lucky show by so many people (I’ve never read about or heard him say anything of the sort to be fair- I’d like to emphasize that point).

            Anyway, I appreciate the conversation. Thanks for entertaining my thoughts, and here’s to the next awesome kickstarter and collaboration, and the unique, passionate person or people who launch it! Cheers!

          • Nairobi

            There’s plenty of evidence for Luckey not being in front of the charge. The moment Zuckerberg dropped $2B and shadowed Luckey’s $2.5M way back in early 2014 when they started talking about hiring a real team of engineers and doing massive HR management. But this fact should not be what should convince you. Again, he did not do anything as far as development for Oculus HMD besides being a figurehead. Luckey LITERALLY became just a dude pedaling on a scooter around the offices.

          • Andrew Jakobs

            Well, then why did everybody worship Steve Jobs? He wasn’t any different (except being a real a**hole and stealing other peoples ideas), he didn’t actually develop anything himself..

          • Nairobi

            You answered your own question. Though Im confused at your sarcasm. Steve was a figurehead too. But he was a marketing genius that actually realized his own influence. Luckey didn’t, and now it’s too late.

        • CURTROCK

          Every fire starts with a spark. He lit the spark. I suppose we should give credit to Benjamin Franklin for discovering electricity too, after all….no Ben Franklin, no VR….right?

      • Sponge Bob

        “After his successful kickstarter, the big companies took the steering wheel from his hands”

        ???

        Do you mean Oculus received substantial VC funding after Kickstarter and before being acquired by Facebook ?
        kickstarter btw does not fund serious development – 2 mil is not nearly enough to produce a refined VR HMD with tracking etc.
        its mostly used for advertising already ready-for-market products -sort of pre-order PR

      • Get Schwifty!

        It’s easy to reduce down his achievement to being a mere charismatic hobbyist, he certainly helped shape the initial company and it’s focus, you have to give credit there…

      • victor

        who cares, he started the ball rolling. Big companies are afraid to start anything until already proven!!…and Luckey proved it(VR), hacker or not! Note: Many important inventors/innovators in history were “hackers”. Off the top of my head: Nicola Tesla, Wright brothers….

    • victor

      TOTALLY AGREE!

  • RockstarRepublic

    Remember folks, its ok to attack republicans or anyone not left of center, but if you do the full force of literal bigotry will be coming your way. Facebook has its political allegiances, and Palmer after coming out as not on the far left really had no future there, even via oculus.

  • OgreTactics

    Palmer Luckey is not a conceptor, but still a deeply passionate VR engineer who is the only single fucking one who did any job in this VR paradigm conception whatsoever (beside Sony’s natural headband design which they took from their VR theater headset, Leap Motion for hand-tracking, all the small nobodies and start-ups like TPCast, rEvolve, Fove even Baofeng or Wereality…doing their part, and all those poor vaporwared companies like 13th Lab or Nimble bit).

    In 2012, Palmer Luckey had and brought-together the idea that nobody else had, which was to use the recently released smartphone screen, splitting-it in two to display the adjusted warped image, directed on according lenses, and using the internal IMU sensors for 360° while at it. Unfortunately not being a conceptor he stopped there, and the next (and in fact only other job that was done for VR) step was only to use a 30 y.o. archaïc technic of putting an IR camera rived on LED for head-tracking.

    From there, nobody conceived, iterated or invented shit for VR, and 4 years after all we got was the same, thus shitty, conceptually non-sensical nor practical heavy, cabled, tethered, untracked headset with bare improvements, and today in 2017 Samsung still released that now crap pole-fixed GearVR gadget…a shame.

    • Sponge Bob

      So what next big step for VR you are talking about ? Is there one ?

      VR is here to stay, resolution goes up slowly but steadily – at 8K already with new Pimax, wireless streaming from PC GPU vs local HMD rendering is a huge technical challenge – not a new concept, just takes time and technological development ($$$) to mature. IR tracking is well known and works.
      3D audio is well developed.
      VR content is lacking of course because of $$$

      Then what ???

      My guess it’s gonna be a “VR mouse” – a standard (and small – nothing like those Touch and Vive monstrosities) controller to interact with all aspects of VR apps.
      (LeapMotion being an analog of touchscreen which DID NOT replace ordinary mouse and keyboard for anything important)

      Can’t think of anything else to add to VR

      treadmills, weapons in VR, mimicking touch sensation – not that much interesting, at least not to many people outside of gamer’s circle

      • Get Schwifty!

        Lol Touch is very comfortable and about the size of a large mouse… monstrosity? While I think the Vive wands are a pretty poor controller design, they are also far from a monstrosity…

        • Sponge Bob

          it is ugly and completely unsuitable for (future) VR productivity applications
          (e.g. 3D autocad or sculpting)
          same for vive’s controller

      • OgreTactics

        “Can’t think of anything else to add to VR” that’s all VR inspires in you? Then I understand why you would think it’s enough for VR to stay. Actually at the end of 2017, the situation will be worse for VR, but let’s wait.

        • Sponge Bob

          Why do you think the situation will be worse at the end of 2017 ???
          There is plenty of new development by small companies
          Once they prove the tech the big ones will aquire them (as usual) and VR will progress

          • OgreTactics

            Because as per market laws, if the launch year followed by the first holiday season had so mediocre results, that are again not random or magical but due to the conception and specs, who will buy these in 2017 now that the initial buzz has passed?

            The hope, was for mobile VR to drive adoption while “studio” VR gets better enough (the “enough” part not even being certain), the problem is that with that shit GearVR stalling, it’s going nowhere.

            So sure, 2017 is going to be the year of VR content, but then if content is not driven by significantly more headset adoption in the first place…yup end 2017 will be a terrible statement for VR, and it’ll just be an instantaneous matter of what will be announced in 2018 because past that, if VR headset still are not convincing as practical device, investors will make their compulsory conclusion.

          • Sponge Bob

            the problems with content -(VR apps ) is that they are written to hand-held controller capabilities and specs:
            VR apps written for e.g. LeapMotion are useless with Touch and vice versa
            since there is no standard for VR user interaction developers will have to make wild guesses
            Those with right guesses will be rewarded

          • OgreTactics

            “right guesses”, which I call conception in a more concrete way, is the most important discussion about VR. Since there is no Steve Jobs of the VR, and since Palmer Luckey gave an initial prototypal ignition, it seems like nobody but a few software engineers doing tweaks, optims or implementation here and there, and then mainly start-up doing the job of corporations for obviously missing compulsory components of a true VR headset, nobody did shit we’re still so so far from a real device.

            That’s why I say 2017 will be terrible for VR: there is no magic that exempts VR headset from the same new market segment timing or momentum window that every single other market or product is subjected to. The best exemple being smartphones (the real ones, not the pretend “proto-smartphone” called Palm which have nothing to do with it): the first iPhone was ground-breaking, it was expensive (700€) people didn’t really know it’s use, yet it sold 6 millions the first year and 4 billions in 10 years. That’s not magic or genius, that’s simply how good a product it was conceived with all the “right guesses”.

            Well now imagine if the first iPhone had a low resolution screen, that is small and framed into a bulky hand pad, that you can’t interact with a touch screen but instead an external controller, and had to be constantly plugged not just to power-source but to a PC to function…as hard as it is to imagine, if Apple release such a gadget for any reason that “seemed promising, and opened the amazing prospect of having a hand-held device that does everything prior hand-held devices like calculator, cellphone, pocket console, palm, walkman, compass etc…did”, they would’ve probably sold about 300K top and died out.

            Which is exactly what Oculus and Vive sold the first year: for the SAME reasons that they are as badly conceived as the exemple I made, but under the pretext that for 40 years we’ve been so familiar with the idea of VR and as soon as someone (Luckey) had a good idea, everybody got high on dreams and promises without even asking the fucking question “but WHAT exactly is VR, and therefor how exactly should a headset be”? 2018 is the last pending year where people are going to ask this, and depending on what they have been presented with will either conclude “yes it’s a true thing I can’t even spend a day, work or move without” like smartphones or “well that was a nice gadget I got bored/tired and have no actual use for”…

          • Sponge Bob

            Relax

            VR is not going anywhere – its at the inflexion point due to convergence of different technological developments
            Tether is a problem indeed but also an advantage – battery runs out quickly on those “standalone” or “mobile” headsets (40-60 min max on hi gpu power) so what’s the difference between power cable and hdmi/usb cable ? a cable is a cable
            Until batteries improve a lot expect tether cable to stay at least as an option in “high-end” VR (sitting or standing but no walking – it’ll still sell a lot)
            PLus who wants to wear heavy batteries on their head ? Not me
            Id rather have a very light headset and a cable
            Mobile VR aka gear VR or daydream with smart phones inside is dead end – completely wrong form and heat dissipation factor
            And regardless, VR will have a lot of uses in every field, they just need to be discovered and refined

          • OgreTactics

            By what magic? Are you talking about actual prospective matrices and marketing laws, or is it just a “guess”. Why would VR magically have an infinite amount of time of mediocre hardware and content sales, for it to “eventually develop” this and that even though there’s not a single person who seem to have a clear vision or roadmap for what a VR device should be?

            Battery is a problem indeed, because it relies on the smartphone ones which are either small or badly optimised. Put a battery on the upper top of the VR headset with relevant heat-dissipation : one exemple.

            “VR will have a lot of uses in every field, they just need to be discovered and refined” again what does it mean exactly, what use, what is to be discovered, to be refined, therefor exactly what hardware and software are manufacturers building and selling? That’s the problem here: I work on this market. Right-now VR is a glorified digital art/content gadget, but nobody who even owns one used them regularly or practically, and this is a small number. Why would any of the billions of other people which obviously, aware of VR or not, are still not rushing to buy one.

            As for mobile VR being a dead-end, could you be more specific about what you prefer on PC tethered headset, specifically the things you are willing to trade for bulk, external tracking, cabling and tethering (meaning only usable on one system)? What would you have said if Samsung for once did it’s fucking job, and had implemented head-tracking on the new GearVR anyway or the other (could have been, I don’t know, using their fucking Gear 360 patent, or maybe even using the external camera with IR tracking but the S8 being cheap crap, it’s not integrated)?

          • Sponge Bob

            the current VR content (e.g. Oculus store) is crap – stupid games and so-called “experiences” to give a glimpse of future possibilities – nothing more

            VR itself can be applied to any kind of activity as a cheap accessible (and harmless) simulation

            hands-on training is just one example

            anything at all – surgery, car repairs, pilot training on a cheap, sculpting, painting in 3D, architecture, building construction – the list goes on and on
            it will require suitable hardware (the current one is not) and huge investments to make it happen
            just like it required huge investments to make internet/online digital media revolution happen for all of us

            But it’s irreversible

            The current hardware sucks though, I agree on this

            head tracking is just a must have necessity
            but controllers are just as important
            and Touch or Vive’s suck big time for anything I mentioned above

  • Get Schwifty!

    Interesting takes – at 24 with a measley 500+ million I suspect Palmer’s VR influence and career is far from over… and I wouldn’t be surprised if he chose to leave for reasons that have nothing to do with his pittance of a donation or even the lawsuit.

    If I had half a billion I wouldn’t put up with the hassle of showing up to work every day…

    • Justos

      Agreed, but i feel like he still wouldn’t want to have left Oculus, he definitely got let go.

      • Get Schwifty!

        You have no way of knowing that – trust me, he might have felt frustrated at the influence of Facebook, a key personality conflict, or just wanted to take a break from it all and try something else.

    • Foreign Devil

      Is that 500 million before or after the 500 million settlement he has to pay to Zenimax?

      • Andrew Jakobs

        Zenimax get’s 500 million in total, ‘only’ 50 million from Palmer..

        • Get Schwifty!

          Which is why I indicated 500+ million… knocking off the cost of the suit, legal fees, and his mad money spending :)

  • Michael Lupton

    This goes to show the whole “the Enemy Of My Enemy Is My Friend” thing only works when the enemy of your enemy isn’t a mindless bigot. I wish this whole Nimble America thing never happened as I hate it when good technology is stifled by stupid political bull excrement.

  • wowgivemeabreak

    Go against the libtard cult and they will make you pay as they show off their supposed tolerance which is nothing but a fantasy in their deluded minds as they are anything but tolerant.

    A thanks to him and all he did for VR.

  • Firestorm185

    100% more entertaining than seeing it on every article. XD

  • Randy V.

    Pretty sad that he will be black listed for backing a…. president *gasp* how dare he have a opinion! Next thing that might happen is free thought without the internet, tv, or your phone telling you what to think… the humanities!

  • Sponge Bob

    Not to doubt Palmer Luckey’s achievements, BUT…

    Who wrote the first working code to render those distorted stereo images on smart phone screen to view through those lenses and to change them in real time as IMU data changes ???

    Was it Luckey or was it Carmack ???

  • Roy Peer

    Can’t wait to see whats next for Luckey. Hope he keeps the momentum going.

  • Foreign Devil

    I think Mark Zuckerberg didnt’ like Palmer getting the spotlight. Notice that Zuck has taken over doing the Occulus connect key presentations.

  • Foreign Devil

    It’d be really entertaining if we next hear that HTC Vive has hired Palmer

    • Get Schwifty!

      That would be cool actually…

  • Will miss him. He was a simple techie in this VR world all made by corporates and business men

  • philb

    This was not a political decision this was over the fact that Facebook is moving out of the hardware business. They are going to continue development of hardware but license it to 3rd parties. I think Valve forced them to rethink their business.

    Valve been able to grow the number of hardware partners as Microsoft enters the space with inside out tracking. This is why Valve is racing to allow full body tracking with those stand alone track able devices.

    I think Samsung will expand their partnership with Facebook. Word is Samsung has developed a 1200 to 1500 dpi screen for a yet announced VR/AR headset. This way Oculus will provide the software and expertise in integrated systems platform for VR/AR.

    I think the next 5 years will see far more growth in augmented reality then virtual reality. Facebook does not want to get tied up with the constant cycle of hardware evolution.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Valve or Vive here? OTOH, I think if Oculus stops trying to do the hardware thing on their own and works through Samsung that is ideal. Be interesting to see what tracking system they adopt…

      • Sponge Bob

        work through samsung ideal ???

        samsung “creatively adopted” just about everything from apple
        (according to court patent decisions)
        thanks but no thanks

  • Lani Paradise

    Palmer was fired because he lied to Facebook. He lied about previous contracts he had signed and did not disclose the fact that he was working for someone else developing this technology immediately prior to his kickstarter campaign. During its du-diligence of the Oculus acquisition Facebook would have asked about any prior contracts and I believe Palmer lied to them in his non-disclosure of the both the TRT contract and the Zenimax agreements. I doubt he was fired because of Nimble and his political actions, although he lied about those too. Those same lies regarding the contracts he signed in 2011-2012 will potentially cost Oculus hundreds of millions of dollars in legal fees and damages to be paid to Zenimax.
    I bet Facebook saved a huge bundle of money by firing him because he would not get the bonus payment which was promised to the original Oculus founders if they stayed on for 5 years after the acquisition.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Good points if they are correct, but we don’t know he was fired unless you know something the press doesn’t. BTW, if lying was an issue and not revealing all one could argue the same applies to Carmack, but he isn’t going anywhere it seems…

      • Lani Paradise

        Well, my guess is he didn’t quit Oculus out of his own free will…and I also don’t believe he left because of Nimble or his political support of Trump. There is a more substantial reason which caused Facebook to let go of their wunderkind, the press just doesn’t know about it yet. My guess is that they discovered that he had been untruthful when selling the technology behind Oculus and a lot of it didn’t belong to him. So actually he sold them stolen property and they’re pretty upset about it but they won’t say that to the press because it would be bad for business and bad for Zuck’s reputation.

        • Sponge Bob

          Zuck’s “reputation” isn’t exactly spectacular regarding “stolen goodies”
          The Wincklevoss twins can confirm

          • RockstarRepublic

            Or politics for that matter. While he is attacking those on the political right at home, he is stealing land and kicking out natives over in Hawaii.

            The moment Palmer became tied to Facebook, he was already neck deep in a bigoted and hostile work environment.

      • Sponge Bob

        Carmack is more valuable to Facebook at this point
        Plus Carmack recently filed lawsuit (yeah.. another one) against Zenimax accusing them of not paying him full amount for his gaming company
        the plot thickens …

  • He must be going to work for the WH

  • brubble

    This guy was too young and ignorant to know when to keep his mouth shut.
    Go be a potato someplace else….