2008 Hippo Awards — nominations now open

The Hippos return!

We are now accepting nominations for the second annual Linden Lab Innovation Awards. Also known as The Hippos, these awards honor open source community members who have had the most significant impact on the Second Life viewer project over the last year. Who are these folks? They are C++ developers who have submitted more than 200 patches that have been incorporated into the main Second Life viewer in the last twelve months. They are people with varied talents and backgrounds who have done an enormous amount of work documenting protocols, triaging bugs and contributing to the development of the viewer in countless ways. Linden Lab thanks all these contributors, and we look forward to honoring the community superheroes who are making the Second Life viewer project a success.

This year, we are honoring open source contributors in five categories. If you’d like to make a nomination, read about the work of current nominees or learn more about the Hippos, then please read on.


= Nominations =
If you would like to nominate open source community members for a Hippo Award,
then please
* sign in to the JIRA issue tracker and add the nominee’s Second Life avatar name as a subtask to the appropriate category (below), and
* write a comment about what their contribution was and why you find it to be exemplary. Please cite JIRA issues, wiki pages or other examples of the contribution wherever possible.

Nominations are open from now through 2008 July 8 at noon PDT.

Additional notes:
* Although the issue tracker has a voting feature, winners will not be selected by popular vote but through the jury process described below.
* Please create only one JIRA issue per nominee per category. You are welcome to second a nomination by commenting on the JIRA opened in that nominee’s name.
* People may be nominated in multiple applicable categories.

== Eligibility ==
* Nominees are eligible to win if their contribution was made between 2007/07/01 and 2008/06/30.
* Linden Lab employees and family members are not eligible to win.

== Judging ==
These are juried awards, and winners will be selected based on a point system used by the judges. The judges panel will be comprised of Linden open source team members and developers.

= Categories =
Nominees should exhibit not only a great track record in their respective categories but also exemplify core community values of collegiality and respect.

Visit the JIRA links below to read a description of the category and make nominations.
* Best Documentation MISC-1301
* Best Project Organizer MISC-1302
* Best Contribution MISC-1303
* The Jesse Malthus Award for Best Community Influence MISC-1304
* Contributor of the Year MISC-1305

We have redefined some of the categories from last year and added a new one in order to reduce overlap and increase coverage of the breadth of work coming from the community.

= Awards =
Award winners will be announced in early September. I’ll be sending another message with the exact date, time and location of this event. You can see last year’s award announcement on the blog.

== Prizes ==
The 2007 Hippo Award winners received a rent-free parcel on the open source island Hippotropolis for one year and a gift of Linden dollars. The Contributor of the Year also received a Macintosh computer. Based on feedback from the 2007 winners, we’ll be making some changes to the prize types and distribution this year, though the overall value of the prizes will be similar. A later announcement will detail this year’s prizes.

P.S. By the way, if you’re not familiar with the hippo meme, the hippo has long been “the mascot” of Second Life. In the early days, Linden service announcements on the public forums would often feature the dramatic doings of super-powered yet secretive hippos who kept the grid safe from bugs released by evil gnomes. It seemed an appropriate icon for the open source project.

– – – – –

The LINDEN LAB INNOVATION AWARDS are for entertainment purposes only and have no monetary or other value. LINDEN LAB, LINDEN RESEARCH, and SECOND LIFE are trademarks or registered trademarks of Linden Research, Inc.

About Liana Linden

I work on the Open Source Team and Licensing issues. View my wiki page.
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13 Responses to 2008 Hippo Awards — nominations now open

  1. Ghost Menjou says:

    Ah the Hippo Rewards..I remember them.
    A reachout to the people who help to get the bugs fixed for free =)

  2. Georgette Whitfield says:

    Ah so that’s what (hippos) in my friends list stands for!

  3. linnie says:

    #5 hugsalot

    I agree totally with you, the mad patcher (in a positive meaning) Nicholaz Beresford is a obvious choice. I seam to recall he won (something) last year too… go for 2 in a row Nic 🙂

  4. Maxx Monde says:

    I nominate these guys:


    Nothing like being able to run your own free simulator 🙂

  5. Ann Otoole says:

    Yea coders!

    Let’s forget all about all the people who have busted rear ends testing and troubleshooting all the buggy code because we all know testers are meaningless to Linden Lab right?

    Pfffft who needs testers anyway. Obviously the coders never ever code in any defects. Code first. Quality Last?

  6. Zi Ree says:

    I got a nice number of patches into the viewer myself, so I guess “everyone else” is wrong.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Is it possible for some random person to join and win just because he/she was most voted for?

  8. AWM Mars says:

    It is good to realise that all those that give their time freely have gainned recognition for their efforts. Without whom, we could still be stuck with a whole raft of bugs still in circulation.

    It is very Humble of LL to see those people and their efforts, for that alone, they are applauded.

    I just wonder if there are enough categories and places to encompass all those that have contributed to Second Life in many forms, that has made Second Life what it is today. Things we may take for granted?

    I would like to add my personal thanks to all those unsung heros, they know who they are.

  9. Do I really need to explain why Arcadia Asylum is the best nominée for the Jesse Malthus-award ? Could somebody help, please ? 😐

  10. Broccoli Furry says:

    I vote for ME!

  11. Jonathen Snow says:

    A33: Yes Arcadia Asylum was the best content creator SL has ever had. No doubt about that. This can be seen by the great number of members the “Arcadia Asylum Recovery Group” has. A group that started After Arcadia left SL.

    But…. the award is about the viewer.
    To my honest opinion(and proven by thousends of users) there is one person who did more for the SL population then all of the Linden bug team and others all toghether:


    He has made a stable version of the viewer where Linden could not but most of all: He is honest about what he does with the viewer and he does not not put in unwanted features. He even takes them back out when the majority does not want it. Thanks to Nicholaz I am able to still have the interface WITH the friendsbutton and it was only Nicholaz who solved memory leak problems and the attachment problems at simcrossing. He is my absolte hero. I hope he wins it and then refuses it to make a point 🙂

  12. Liana Linden says:

    FYI, here is a link to the list of community viewer contributions. You can see all of the code patches in this list on the Second Life wiki.

    However, these awards are not just about code contributions. It takes many people and many kinds of effort to make a successful open source project. Which leads me to…

    @ Ann Otoole: Testers are absolutely eligible for Hippo Awards! When you read the category descriptions, you’ll find that testers may be eligible for awards in several categories. In fact, we changed the category descriptions this year so that they would be broad enough to honor the variety of work being done — and not just the coders, though we are very grateful to them too.

    @ Anonymous: No, the nomination and judging rules in the post above explain that people’s work is judged by a panel and will win based on proven track record, not on popular vote.

    @ AWM Mars: Thanks for the supportive comments. The current Hippo Awards are aimed at open source contributions. Like many residents, I too would like to see an award that acknowledges excellence in many other categories of platform development — including inworld content creation and so forth. However, we do not have an internal team with the bandwidth to run such a program right now.

    @ WiLLuMPJuH Footman: Yes, you do have to say why someone’s open source contribution makes them a good candidate for an award. Please do that in JIRA.

    @ Broccoli Furry: If you’d like to nominate yourself, please do that in JIRA and provide supporting examples of your open source work.

    @ Jonathen Snow: You can see the list of last year’s winners (Nicholaz was one of them) on the blog post linked to above. I’d also like to point out that Nicholaz very graciously accepted his award. 🙂

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