IMVU is 3d avatar chat; it’s also a pride-inducing piece of software engineering.

Guy whose “About me” page says “I currently work full time on my blog” mocked the place I work for not being a cure for cancer.

Twitter conversing

codinghorror: If I worked on “IMVU: 3D Avatar Chat Instant Messenger & Dress Up Game”, I’d be too embarrassed to blog about it, frankly.

codinghorror: He’s like “our deployment is sweet!” I’m like “dude, you’re deploying a 3d chat game for tweens.” Congratulations, I guess

antumbral: @codinghorror Feel free to ignore the lessons learned by industry leaders like Nexon just because their customers are younger than you.

codinghorror: @antumbral well, let’s just say 3d chat avatar dress-up software was not the cure for cancer I had hoped it would be.

Prestemon: Guy whose “About me” page says “I currently work full time on my blog” mocked the place I work for not being a cure for cancer. Speechless.

What, really?

Jeff Atwood/Coding Horror

What Jeff Atwood is missing the complete point of (in the second tweet) is that the deployment system is sweet, and a successful “3d chat game” requires some amazing pieces of engineering required to pull it off. We have a 3d desktop application, a chat service, a giant catalog, a very high-traffic site, and an always-increasing number of persistent users.


As far as what IMVU is: IMVU is a service supplying a need, and making people happy in the process. A lot of people. It’s an MMORP without the rules-based G.

I can speak, however, to being a software engineer at IMVU in much more detail, as I spend many more hours engineering than I do as a user of the service. The number of interesting things to do at IMVU as an engineer is endless: Do you want to work in C++ today and play with the deep guts of 3d implementation and optimization? Would you like to work in python and use a really cool task system? How about some Flash that’ll be used daily by a horde of customers, or the infrastructure to allow those customers to make (and sell) their own flash for other customers to use in the product? Interested in scalability problems and other large-scale optimizations or the infrastructure and strategies needed to allow for making changes to a truly titanic amount of data? Or maybe just work on new and better things that will make customers, real people, happy?

Want to be in a functional business environment yet, as a team of engineers, ship code fifty times a day to a live and heavily used service?

We do these things every day. It’s engineering candyland.

I work at IMVU, and I’m damned proud of it mister Atwood.

7 thoughts on “IMVU is 3d avatar chat; it’s also a pride-inducing piece of software engineering.”

  1. Just because your not working on the cure for cancer, doesn’t mean you can’t be proud of your work or do an amazing job technology wise. 99% of tech bloging is probably written by people doing anything but curing important diseases.

  2. Jeff is being a bit of a dick here. IMVU’s deployment system is fantastic, and I can’t see how he could dismiss that because of the application it is supporting. Surely that is beside the point? Are all of our technological advances supposed to come from cancer research?

  3. To quote Fake Steve out of context:

    “This idiot has been so consistently wrong for his entire career that we use him as a contrarian indicator.”

    He was talking about Dvorak, but Coding Horror fits just as well.

  4. Whoa. I got y-combined:

    The comments there are overwhelmingly positive. I’m pleasantly surprised, because I’d assumed Atwood’s opinion would be in the majority case.

    Sometimes the stereotype of the software engineer as the Simpson’s Comic Book Guy overrides the truth that professional software engineers trend towards being thoughtful and able to think about the other side of a presented opinion. Thanks for reminding me, guys.

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