The Mom Rule

Rony Abovitz | February 25th, 2015

I love the dream of VR and AR.

I love ice cream.

I love my Mom (and Dad).

At my last company (Mako) I put in place “The Mom Rule” – above and beyond all of our FDA regulations, ISO regulations, and international regulations that governed the safety and quality of products used on people during surgery – what I really cared about was “The Mom Rule.”

It was simple – before we shipped anything, I would ask the team and our team leads

“Would you use this on your Mom?” (or Dad, assuming you had a generally healthy and good relationship with them).

I would need to look people in the eye because that question hits home. It is not generalized safety blah blah blah. It was “would you allow your Mom, who gave birth to you and cared for you and gave you life – would you let her be subject to this thing we built.”

Until the answer was a complete “yes” all around – we did not ship.

And yes – we ultimately used our devices on many Moms and Dads and brothers and sisters and grandparents and cousins and friends – including the Moms and Dads and siblings of our team, and even the Mom of our top software architect (Lou).

What does this have to do with Magic Leap?

There is not anyone in the world who is not someone's Mom or Dad or brother or sister or son or daughter or friend or cousin.

We need the same rule – and when we ship our Magic Leap products – we want to know that our system is awesome, chock full of great software and experiences and design – but that at the top of our list we know that it is safe. Safe to use – safe for a kid to use. Safe for a teenager. Safe for your bro or sis. Safe for your Mom and Dad. Safe for you.

The dream of AR and VR, of allowing our human creativity to express itself in the ultimate medium of visual reality – that is freaking awesome. I want to make that happen. That is a big giant ice-cream sundae with hot fudge and peanuts and whipped cream and a cherry on top. And a side-car of hot fudge too.

That dream we all share of this amazing future – it will happen. But it has to pass “The Mom Rule” first.

Rony