Computer-Mediated Communication Magazine / Volume 1, Number 5 / September 1, 1994 / Page 5

Bending the World

The Genesis of World Benders, Inc.

by Chris Hand (

Jon Callas and Tamzen Cannoy used to run a MUCK called The DreamTime. After spending many hours in MUDspace they began to wonder whether they could combine business with pleasure in a text-based VR. The original idea was to provide some kind of "mudding resort", with business as well as entertainment use. "We thought it would be fun to run one professionally--and it's a good way to support your mudding habit" says Jon, World Benders' Director of Technology.

The motivation to start up a company came when Tamzen (now company President) was laid off from her previous job. At this time the Meeting Space project was starting to take shape--the idea being to provide MUD-like facilities to the business community for on-line meetings. Despite being turned down for an SBIR they remained enthusiastic, and they migrated their early Common Lisp prototype system to C/C++.

Now World Benders, Inc. has eight employees and a development plan stretching years into the future. In the short term, the GUI clients (used to connect to Meeting Space servers) will be made freely available, and a server should be appearing on the Internet during the summer of '94. ¤

Contact Details

World Benders, Inc. Tel/Fax +1 603 881-5432, Internet e-mail:, AppleLink: worldbender

See also: the overview article.

Chris Hand is a lecturer, writer and co-founder of the UK VR-SIG. His physical body resides in Leicester, England where even local phone calls cost 71 pence per hour.

Text and artwork Copyright © 1994 Chris Hand ( All rights reserved.

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