Rob Glaser is finest referred to as the founder and CEO of RealNetworks, the Seattle-based firm that makes a speciality of digital media, video games and laptop imaginative and prescient know-how. However for about 20 years, he was additionally a part of the possession group for the Skilled Bowlers Affiliation, alongside together with his former Microsoft colleagues Chris Peters and Mike Slade.
That’s how Glaser landed within the PBA Corridor of Fame earlier this 12 months, regardless of by no means having been a professional bowler.
It additionally makes Glaser the reply to what turned out to be a troublesome trivia query on the most recent episode of the GeekWire Podcast. As a part of our common tech trivia contest for listeners, we requested, “Which present CEO of a Seattle tech firm has been inducted into the corridor of fame of an expert sport?” We obtained plenty of guesses, however just one proper reply.
So we determined to get the backstory from Glaser for this bonus episode. We additionally talked about RealNetworks’ new MaskCheck app, which makes use of laptop imaginative and prescient to detect whether or not individuals are carrying masks correctly in compliance with public well being pointers.
Hear beneath, or subscribe to GeekWire in any podcast app, and proceed studying for extra particulars.
Glaser has bowled since he was a child rising up in Yonkers, N.Y. Additional proving his devotion to the game, one of many quirks of the previous RealNetworks headquarters on Seattle’s Elliott Avenue was the two-lane bowling alley within the basement.
After leaving Microsoft, Glaser joined with Peters and Slade to buy the PBA, which was in want of a turnaround after dropping its TV contract, amongst different challenges.
He says he loves bowling as a result of it’s one thing virtually anybody can do, versus sports activities akin to soccer, baseball or monitor that depend on measurement and velocity. As well as, he mentioned, bowling rewards qualities that he values, together with consistency and adaptableness.
“One of many issues that folks don’t learn about bowling is the situations change throughout the sport,” he defined. “There’s oil on on the lane, and the extra individuals bowl, the extra it strikes the oil round.” The very best bowlers want to know when the situations change and regulate.
He added, “I additionally like the truth that it’s a crew sport, and a person sport, so you possibly can play it both means.”
Not coincidentally, in every of these areas, there are parallels to enterprise and tech.
Glaser was a part of the PBA possession group till it was bought final 12 months by Bowlero Group, beforehand referred to as Bowlmor AMF. Glaser and Slade have been inducted into the PBA Corridor of Fame in January, becoming a member of Peters, who was inducted beforehand. Glaser joked that he can be “virtually definitely the worst bowler within the PBA Corridor of Fame, if it weren’t for Mike Slade.”
Learn extra of the background in Glaser’s acceptance speech on the Corridor of Fame ceremony in January.
Congrats to our contest winner Isaac Alexander, who will obtain a GeekWire masks and mug as his prize. We’ll be again this weekend, with a particular year-in-review episode with visitor commentator Ed Lazowska, College of Washington laptop science professor.
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