View Full Version : Need Someone Else

04-15-2001, 11:54 AM
I'm 14 years old. I started programming in 3rd grade with Pascal, eventually moved up to C/C++. In 7th grade I started working with my friend on on web-based MUD game at dusk.wesowin.org. This year, I've started working with OpenGL.

It may seem sad, but on weekends, i can spend over 12 hours straight coding, and when I'm not coding, I think about coding.

I would like to be involved in a real project, to make a 3D game preferably. About all I've done in that direction so far is get my OpenGL program to read a world file describing rooms made of quads and portals. However, I haven't started the code to draw the rooms yet ( I just finished the portal stuff today, give me time). There is absolutely no one I know near me who I can talk to about this subject, at least no one my age or that I know of.

Would anyone like to join me and start work on something? How many people do we need? What are we going to make? It doesn't have to be anything big, just a fun project to make a small game, maybe like GL Tron.


04-15-2001, 11:57 AM
I forgot to mention, even if working directly with someone would be too difficult given distance and things, is there anyone who I could talk to often about questions or ideas? I am Tilgovi on AIM and 100767765 on ICQ.


04-15-2001, 12:49 PM
Heh, sounds frighteningly like me. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

- Matt

04-15-2001, 01:12 PM
Me too; Iím 16, working on my own game engine (so far only designing the game). I design (on paper) the modules at school, then code at home (quite often into the night, until I realize what time it is). I too donít have anyone around me either that is either up to my ability level or who cares...long lost brothers!? :-) Anyway, if you really want to hear about my project, I could (if you've seen Babylon 5 before, then you'll know the premise)...at any rate, good luck on whatever you do.

04-15-2001, 01:41 PM
I think most of us here are prolly like you http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif. I know I am, but I'm 25.

I have a team helping me with my game already. It's simple. I would closely relate the culling method to a quad tree; think tiles. I don't know bsp trees or portals so I'm restricted to what kind of games I can make http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/frown.gif. One day though; I will http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/biggrin.gif.

04-15-2001, 05:01 PM
ahh a familiar storie...
Back at 15(me is 22 now) I starded doing games with freinds.

But heres a thought, you are looking for coders to join you in your efforts.
(this is not easy)

Why not set your sites on game projects you know you can do without help.
Then find friends at your school who do stuff like drawing, painting, 3d modeling, sound recording, play music or even wite cool stories(plot).

Get to gether a range of tallents and produce simpler games at a very high quality.
The experiance of knowing how to work with these people will come in usefull.

I did this, and the experience (and freinds) was reely worth it.

just a thought...

04-15-2001, 05:08 PM
It sounds like me aswell, I bet we all started out that way or another.

Wouldn't it be cool if OpenGL.org fixed an entire irc server for us GL freaks http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif, with different channels for different main topics.

If it already exists, tell me where to find it.

In the mean time, we are forced to post questions or post replies on these forums in an endless stream of virtual learning.


04-16-2001, 02:50 AM
Originally posted by mcraighead:
Heh, sounds frighteningly like me. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Really??? I'm a bit surprised. I kinda expected you would be a bit older than 14. You sound pretty mature for your age http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

But I echo those words. Except I'm 25...and married (the wife does get a bit bored at times). I spend quite a bit of time coding (including the majority of this 3-day weekend). I work for a web-dev company during day (rather dull work by comparison...I can hardly stand it...but it pays pretty good), and spend most of my free time doing game-dev. I'm trying to get something finished/sellable as quickly as possible so I can hopefully get some sort of income (even if its not a lot) started from it, weed away my current job, and eventually just do game-dev.

04-16-2001, 03:37 AM
ahh, nostalgia...

anyone remember coding for the Motorola 6502, "Player Missile Graphics", Graphics Mode 8? Hehe, back then I thought 256 colours was a pipe dream...."the human eye can't even recognize that many!!!" Sometimes it's just plain good to be so wrong http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Tilgovi, you're on the right track, and believe me, many of us have delt with the same frustrations. Even thru college I couldn't find coders that loved their work as much as I did. On the brighter side of things, you already have a head start on those mediocre programmers you'll find yourself surrounded by over the next 7-10 years.

Sorry to use this thread to reminisce (feels good though), I'm sure with some perserverance you'll manage to pull togehter a team and begin realizing your dreams.

Good Luck!

oh yeah, I forgot to mention to LordKronos that I feel your pain. The wife just dosen't understand, and how many lines of ASP/TSQL code do I have to write before I can get back to writing another OGL demo!!!!

[This message has been edited by lpVoid (edited 04-16-2001).]

04-16-2001, 07:11 AM
No, I mean, it sounds like me at age 15. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I'm currently 19.

- Matt

Michael Steinberg
04-16-2001, 07:29 AM
How can one have a job with 19 years???
I have the feeling that I have to learn 10 years in school and university until I get a job. What's the trick?

Tim Stirling
04-16-2001, 10:04 AM
Sounds like me, but I seem to be "old" compared to some of you since I am 18! http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I found I didn't have enough time to do any real programming. I spent all the time at school thinking about the problems or sometimes coding and then I would type it up at home (and find it doesn't work!). There still wasn't enough time so I left school (there were a few other reasons like I couldn't be bothered revising for exams that I don't need (I have my Uni place)). There still isn't enough time, especialy with my parents nagging at me. At least I wont have my parents at uni but maybe the lectures will get in the way. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif I am hoping that whenI am at Uni there will be some others that have a similar interest in making games. I also agree that you should try to make smaller projects; these a usualy very good and a lot of fun and are successful, however this is something that I have never yet done. In my 6 years of programming i have never yet completed anything that I have started. Origionaly I would start making an intro, complete it and then get bored and ditch the project. Now at least I am attemting to make the engine first and then make a game but my problem will be that if I ever complete an engine, even a level viewer with collision det. and sound that after completion I will start again since I will have learnt a load of new techniques and there will be a load of new technology to use.

04-16-2001, 10:55 AM
Originally posted by Michael Steinberg:
How can one have a job with 19 years???
I have the feeling that I have to learn 10 years in school and university until I get a job. What's the trick?

A job! Why would you want a job? You have your freedom! Enjoy it, it will be over soon enough!

Michael Steinberg
04-16-2001, 12:16 PM
I don't really want a job now. I just want to feel nearer to it. I have serious problems in school right now (well, at least mathematics and physics run well... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif). School pisses me off. I hate the teachers. I hate my classs mates (well, most of them. in my region the people are led by money). I don't have anyone sharing my interrests here (Hi Tim!).
Well, I'd like to be in the uni now. I want the feeling to be productive, not to learn stuff that I'll never need again (yeah, I know one should know a bit about all).

I've got about the same problems. Well, I always program little demos of effects, they actually work. But I don't come far with my engine, because I don't like to write the framework. Currently I started from scratch and hang on my windows/variable/console/texture subsystems alltogether. It's getting me down, but I have the feeling that when I have these systems running well, I have very easy work afterwards. AND, it doesn't run yet. I wrote it down and don'T even know how many logical bugs are in there...well, can't be too much yet...

04-16-2001, 12:16 PM
Originally posted by Tilgovi:

It may seem sad, but on weekends, i can spend over 12 hours straight coding, and when I'm not coding, I think about coding.

Sad? I'm 26 and still do the same! http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Would anyone like to join me and start work on something? How many people do we need? What are we going to make? It doesn't have to be anything big, just a fun project to make a small game, maybe like GL Tron.

Have you considered going over to SourceForge (http://sourceforge.net/) and browsing the Help Wanted in the thousands of open source projects currently going on? Or starting a project of your own?

There are over 2000 projects under the category of "Games/Entertainment" at SourceForge in varying stages of development.
Check it out: http://sourceforge.net/softwaremap/trove_list.php?form_cat=80

I started a simple little project on SourceForge (in LISP even!) and within 2 weeks I had two pretty experienced LISPers helping me out. Pretty sweet. (Shameless plug: My project is Doxymacs (http://doxymacs.sourceforge.net/) ).

So that would be my advice... head on over to SourceForge, get involved in a project, or start your own.

Have fun.

[This message has been edited by rts (edited 04-16-2001).]

04-17-2001, 06:30 AM
Originally posted by mcraighead:
No, I mean, it sounds like me at age 15. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I'm currently 19.

- Matt

heh, im 19 too http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

How can one have a job with 19 years???
I have the feeling that I have to learn 10 years in school and university until I get a job. What's the trick?

i have a job too, theres no trick - just luck really - keeping a job takes skill (unless you work at a big crappy COMPANY...like MS or whoever Neo worked for in the matrix...then you can suck and stay employed for years).

Michael Steinberg
04-17-2001, 06:39 AM
Yeah... I had a little job, but nothing this big. I was happy to earn 1000$. And, if that weren't enough, I had to code with FORTRAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!
One has to be really good to get a better job, I believe...

04-17-2001, 06:49 AM
my current job is ok, im on a decent salary, boss isnt an *******, and its pretty interesting work (electrophoresis image analysis in C++/MFC - say that after a few beers http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif)

04-17-2001, 07:01 AM
Originally posted by Yorvik:
keeping a job takes skill (unless you work at a big crappy COMPANY...like MS or whoever Neo worked for in the matrix...

Well, I am working for one of the biggest engineering consultant in the UK and I really do not think a big company is a crappy company...

Moreover, I can tell you that you need skills to stay in a big company as well...

Anyway... Actually, perhaps I thought the same way than you when I was 19... (I am 25). http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif



[This message has been edited by Eric (edited 04-17-2001).]

04-17-2001, 08:00 AM
hmmm....big companies, skillful employees.

I'm comming to the conclusion that getting a good job and keeping it is a bit of luck, a bit of talent, and a bit of geography.

I've been making money off of code for longer than I can remember, but only within the last few years did I ever get into the "industry." Most of it had to do with relocating from South Carolina, USA, to Washington DC. In SC, there just aren't many jobs for programmers to fill, and they're coveted. There, you can't even get an interview without a degree. I never finished my degree, just couldn't get past all the electives and filler courses.

So I moved up to the DC area and man, it's like they'll hire anyone who knows how to click with a mouse. We're a windows shop and try to keep up with the latest technologies, especially ATL/COM+, yet we hire programmers with absolutely no C/C++ experience.....

It just blows my mind. So I came to work here feeling intimidated and doubting my own talent, simply due to my lack of that damn piece of paper. Well, I've doubled my salary in less than 2 years. Having a degree dosen't make you a good programmer. That comes from inside you.

I guess the moral of all this is that it's a constantly changing industry, and the old school rules just don't apply anymore. If you love to code, don't loose faith. While I'll have to admit that that degree will get you in the door, once you're there it's easy to see the division in talent.

Now, getting a job in the game/graphic industry....

well, as soon as I figure it out I'll let you all know http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif


Tim Stirling
04-17-2001, 08:44 AM
My parents have got me a job (eek), It pays > $10 (which is not bad) an hour but is only for a few hours a week but that gives me plenty of time to program and it should also stop my parents complaining that I am lazy. However it is a gardening job and I don't have a clue about gardening but I think it is mainly cutting the grass and some general manual work which shouldn't be too bad. There are several other people thinking about hireing me to do their garden. Soon I might be a full time gardener, noooo, I will be ruined. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Out of curiosity and sorry for being personal but how old is the oldest person here and how young is the youngest. I once saw a pole on a 3d programming site which showed that most voters were between 15 and 20 and that no one was older than 35 and the youngest was 11!

[This message has been edited by Tim Stirling (edited 04-17-2001).]

Michael Steinberg
04-17-2001, 08:49 AM
Hey tim...
I'm 18... birthday on 2.3... pisces http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-17-2001, 08:59 AM
Tim, don't fret the gardening gig. I worked on a golf course for 2 years, and it was a lot of fun. While I was surrounded by people who didn't know how to use a computer, it paid for my side projects, small contracts, and everything else. I don't know if my job and my hobbies/interests will ever run parallel, but anything that keeps a warm machine in my apartment is worthwhile.

I'm 25, and the youngest coder at my company. Got my first "under the table" contract when I was 10, writing a hard disk driver for the Atari computers at the company my dad worked at. Thank god for engineer parents! I think I got paid $200 for it altogether, which was millions to me at the time.

As a side note, I feel bad for helping turn this thread into another one of our community discussions, but it's good to get to know all of you.


04-17-2001, 11:04 AM
Matt is only 19!? Wow... I pictured him being older. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I'll be 28 myself in May. I didn't actually start coding until I was a senior in HS back in 1990. (BASIC & Pascal) I fell in love with it but never seriously thought about getting a job as a programmer at the time. I felt like I could never obtain the skills needed to become a real pro.

I went into college to get a Zoology degree because I wanted to get into Wildlife Management. The last couple years of that, I was getting depressed because it's hard to get a job in that field. At the same time my programming was eating up my study time. By this time I had got past the stage where I didn't feel like I could do anything and was in my current state of mind where I feel, not so much that I know everything, but that there is nothing I can't LEARN to do.

I finally decided to pick up a second major in CS and I'll be finishing that in May. In July I start a job with a medical imaging company in Seattle, where I'll be working with OpenGL.

Looking back, I think the whole Zoology thing was my way of trying to convince myself and everyone I know that I wasn't a computer geek. I am now able to admit it. "Hi, my name is Dan. I'm a computer geek."

Anyway, it's interesting getting to know more details about other people on the forum. You get to know the people from their posts and start to form your own views of them. For instance, I was picturing Matt to be at least around 27-28. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Rob The Bloke
04-17-2001, 02:38 PM
Originally posted by Tim Stirling:
... However it is a gardening job and I don't have a clue about gardening but I think it is mainly cutting the grass and some general manual work which shouldn't be too bad.

Hey, dont knock it, my first ever job was a gardening job. Was a bit on the lame side, but it sorted out enough coins to get a few sly beers in at the weekend.... (ps, if you've got a center parting, make sure your careful when combing your hair after being in the sun all day - I still remember the pain....)

Out of curiosity and sorry for being personal but how old is the oldest person here and how young is the youngest.

I'm 21, and got into programming at an early age on a spectrum 48k. My uncle gave my family one because he'd been involved in tooling up the factory for production.

I then went on to amiga, and found the technical stuff more intersting, I seem to recall shunning the idea of a console, mainly because you could only play games and not doing anything else on it. (ahh, the playground arguments of why a speccy was better than a master sytem...).

I kinda ignored computers for ages (they moved too fast, my paper-round wouldn't pay for the latest stuff).

I did A-Levels in art, physics & maths, and was pondering what to do after school. I found a little entry in our UCAS book (for those outside UK, a list of all degree courses) that listed a degree in computer animation. I decided to do that, applied, was accepted, started it, and I'm now about to finish.

We do C, C++, Java, & openGL as part of it, as well as animation, film techniques etc. We had to do a group project in the second year, for which a bunch of us decided to do a computer game (www.boonaracer.co.uk - it is rubbish by the way, but you gotta start somewhere.. ). For that I was doing modelling, and was very unhappy with editors and methods we had to use to get stuff into the game. From then on I've been doing programming, and getting other people on the course to do the animation & modelling etc for me.

Getting to the point where I am now, I was very worried about the standard of programming needed to get a job, so I went to see the software engineering degree people.

It became very apparent that I actually knew more than is required to pass one of those degree's.

I'm now applying to some games companies for work when I finish, and I'm somewhat more confident of my abilities. I will say though, that it is probably a good idea to work with some artists to put together something that is artistically cool, as well as technically coll, you get a lot more out of it.

Basically the moral is, if you want a job in programming, it doesn't really matter when you start, if you are into it, you'll get a job becuase you'll spend 12 hours a night doing what you enjoy. Some bloke on a programming degree, will feel as motivated to do some programming, as you did(would) in a french lesson......(nothing against the french, just my french teacher and my lack of ability in the subject)

[This message has been edited by Rob The Bloke (edited 04-17-2001).]

04-17-2001, 04:47 PM
I'm 31 and just recently went into hard-core 3D graphics (I used to do audio & video systems programming before). The only thing that doesn't work for me is that I can only pull 12-hour work days, then the wife & kids call me home :-)

04-17-2001, 05:23 PM
I'm 28 and in the final year of an engineering degree. Luckily, I chose a final year project on 3D medical visualisation that allows me to use OpenGL as the rendering API so I get to spend a lot of time doing it.

I'm also likely to get a job next year with a defence contractor doing sims in Java3D and Java/VRML which is as close as I can get to OpenGL. At least J3D uses OpenGL as its underlying driver sometimes (I think).

04-18-2001, 05:42 AM
How can one have a job with 19 years???
I have the feeling that I have to learn 10 years in school and university until I get a job. What's the trick?

You don't have to go to university to get a good coder. Here in Austria (Europe, no Kaenguruhs) we have technical schools where you learn this. I don't know if there is such a school in other countries.

I am 18 years, next year I will finish the school. Until now I learned Pascal, C, C++, Java, Unix Shell, C for Unix (OS calls), MFC, SQL, Database Engineering, Project Management, Network Technics, ... in school, so at least here in Austria there is no need for an university.

Of course I don't learn OpenGL at school, but this is a very easy task when you know C and a bit of advanced math.

So, theoretically I could get an IT job next year, when I'm about 19 1/2. I don't see the problem when you start learning this stuff early enough, I'm sure if you specialise a bit you can manage this without a school, too.

04-18-2001, 06:51 AM
Well, I'm 21 and tend to be passed around as an engineering team in a box for small startup companies doing random and assorted software; flight tracking,network administration, OS2/Warp... and like the rest of you, this sounds frighteningly like me...

I don't have a degree; and as far as I can tell - though a degree is nice and all - being a good autodidact when you need to be and alot of elbow grease are what you need to get along professionally in the world. Genius and training are nice, but good ol' long-hours and hard-work will beat em every time http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

Once you finally get the lucky break into the professional world, your love of what you do will let you rock the socks of the degree-sought but mundane programmers around you, and 2 or 3 years of shipping real product for real people is worth any degree you could want or find; and from there it's upwards and onwards.

Also; Try getting outside of code. I know big, stupid adult-like people will tell you this all the time, but it's true. Girls are good, beer is good (in a couple years, of course), a little bit of physical activity is good (maybe in relation to girls...), history & music are good. The world is full of great stuff, and anything you learn outside of coding can be applied back in if just in terms of an expanded world-view, especially if your doing games, which are definitly a multi-genre item. Pick up Asimov's chronology of the world, and read it front to back, or take some time to find and appreciate some rachmaninoff, maybe even play it... It'll take you a bit, but I promise you'll come out happier - and maybe even a better coder - for doing it... =)

Just thoughts of someone who's travelled part of the path you're already on your way down...

...and holy cow; btw.. If *I* had had the opengl forums when *I* was 14... geeze... You know how long it took me to figure out matrix representation of orientation and position before we had all of human knowledge at our fingertips in the form of the web! *snort* Kids these days... I had to walk uphill both ways... *grumble* http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

Tim Stirling
04-18-2001, 09:31 AM
Originally posted by Deiussum:

Looking back, I think the whole Zoology thing was my way of trying to convince myself and everyone I know that I wasn't a computer geek. I am now able to admit it. "Hi, my name is Dan. I'm a computer geek."

I was picturing Matt to be at least around 27-28. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I know what you mean about being a geek. I took up the korean martial art of TaeKwondo to change this view of me, it is also good to get away from a computer desk for a bit. One thing about being a geek is that even the idiot/bullies at school called me a geek. I didn't even tell them to say this! I think maybe that they don't know what a heek is!! http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif
Yeah I pictured Matt to be a lot older (>25) like everyone else has.

04-18-2001, 11:39 AM
Originally posted by Tim Stirling:
I think maybe that they don't know what a heek is!! http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I'm not sure I know what a heek is exactly either... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-18-2001, 03:33 PM
I am 23 and working in a 3rd party game-dev company. I really feel bad comparing to Tilgovi. God knows what I am doing at the age of 14, I myself can not remember. It seems I have wasted a lot of time... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/frown.gif
And Matt, are you serious that you are 19? I can not believe a person that helps me so much is so young. I even feel worse... what have I done to waste all those good days?

[This message has been edited by Nil_z (edited 04-18-2001).]

04-19-2001, 02:57 AM
Now this is a fun thread.

>>Out of curiosity and sorry for being personal but how old is the oldest person here and how young is the youngest. <<

Seems as if I'm currently winning this contest: I'm 36.
Seems as if I chose my userame properly. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

Now here is another interesting personal question: How many of you can say, that your real name is in the OpenGL specs? http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/biggrin.gif

04-19-2001, 03:30 AM
Thanks Relic,
I was strarting to get worried that it was going to be me. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif I'm 33 and got into coding late in life. I got out of highschool swearing I'd never take another math or science again (sympathy for previous postee's who can't stand school). Took an intro to CS at the ripe age af 25, and the rest is history. And no, despite being stuck in the world of academics, I don't think you need the piece of paper; I just happen to like research as much as I like coding. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-19-2001, 03:33 AM
I'd rather have that gardner job instead of my lousy programming job I've now!.. Its just deadlines (that keep swooshing by), stupid bugs and bosses. (They just come up with new impossible ideas to implement in the unextendable codebase... ARGH!) I feel like I'm in a Dilbert cartoon. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Although being a gameprogrammer would be more fun, I'm sure. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-19-2001, 04:33 AM
I must be the oldest geezer on here!
I'm 32, would LOVE, to program OpenGL 12 hours a day, BUT......I have a 2 year old
to entertain and a 3month old lump due to arrive in the world on 3rd Oct 2001....

Oh yeah, and a wife whose aim in life is to ween me off computers....

Put this into context:
Over the past 6 years, I have written 31 games, 6 commercially, all in my spare time,
most for no financial return, whilst working
for Orange ( mobile phones company ) in the

My fixation on games ( playing and coding )drives the wife ( and my colleagues ) nuts.

I've been coding since I was 11, and don't plan to ever change... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif


04-19-2001, 04:38 AM
Well, I am a game programmer at Clever's. I do game programming for two years now, before that I was an active memeber of the demo scene. I am 25.
During my time here I had to realise that when you do something for money that changes everything. You need to change you point of view.
When you code your game at home, you can spend as much time as you want (or have) on that. In the game industry everything is around the milestones. You need to figure out the creation time of programs, modules you have never seen. Deadlines makes you crazy, and as usual everything goes wrong one day before the finish date. Really hard thing. But it is fun.

I belive that until you can see the fun in it you'll be fine.

[This message has been edited by mandroka (edited 04-19-2001).]

04-19-2001, 05:48 AM
I'll throw my hat in on this one...

I'm 25 years old. Started coding around 14 with GW-Basic on a 286 IBM clone (with an 8088 math coproc and Hercules graphics chipset, green phosphor monitor ofcourse!).

Ever since my discovery of the ability to draw lines and circles with GW-Basic, I couldn't get enough. I started writing tank games, fighting games, and whatever else I felt like imitating from what I was playing at the time.

My late teens and early twenties were swallowed up by an obsession with clubs/bars/parties and whatever trouble I could get into. Programming took a backseat. So did college. Lesson learned.

I got back into programming about 4 years ago, with Linux as my weapon of choice. In the last year I've decided to return to college (or University depending on what part of the world you're from), and it's going well so far. I haven't learned anything yet, but the fundementals of "learning how to learn" are timeless.

As far as work goes, I have been with a major OEM for five years (I won't cite the OEM name, as that I've made very opinionated posts on this board and I wouldn't want anyone to misconstrue my opinions as shared by the company I work for.) I worked in IT for a bit, but about 2 years ago I joined the Peripheral Development organization. We have a large engineering organization dedicated to testing, and as such, it's important to have up to date, accurate, and robust tests.

That's where I come in. About a year ago I started writing tests for graphics adapters, using ACPI, GDI, OpenGL, and various other API's for touching the display driver. Most of these tests have remained internal to the company. Some of which are extended to our vendors for reproduction of issues.

Nonetheless, I suppose my point to this discourse is that I'm nowhere near the point in my programming career that I want to be, but I'm reading more and more every day; continuing to read this board and refine my own code.

And, as far as Matt's age goes, I don't think any less of his 650+ posts. He's always informative and insightful, providing help when needed, and I should say that I wish our other vendors would be more assertive in this board. (Oh, Cass rocks too. Jason, I've read some of your stuff as well, and appreciate your participation and willingness to represent ATI. Now, let's get Matrox, and 3DLabs/Intense3D to read through this board.)

04-19-2001, 10:24 AM
Originally posted by Michael Steinberg:
I have serious problems in school right now (well, at least mathematics and physics run well... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif). School pisses me off. I hate the teachers.

Well that sounds like me (except that i like chemistry too http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif Well ok not really serious problems with school. (right now i am at a german lesson http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/tongue.gif)

And i thought i was the only one here. At least i know that when my father tells me, that i am camping my computer too long again, i'm not the only one out there http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Hmm to add my age to this little collection: i'am 17 since 16. april http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

Ohh and then back to the topic: yes i'd like to join some kind of project

04-19-2001, 02:59 PM
dodgyposse> Oh yeah, and a wife whose aim in
dodgyposse> life is to ween me off computers....

I just subtly introduced mine to the joys of EverQuest, and she's been strangely compliant ever since :-)

If your life is games, don't work on something else. I finally figured that out and took a lower-paying job doing hands-on stuff I love, and so far I'm enjoying it.

As long as it still pays the mortgage. (I do hate it when my oldest kid is already asleep when I get home -- that happens with any job, though :-( )

04-19-2001, 03:42 PM
Wow! I can't wait till I have time to code 12+ hours on the weekend! I'm 14, turning 15 soon. I also hat teachers and school in general. But math is pretty entertaining as long as you got a good teacher. I also like is learning stuff that will actually help me. But, I think it's a little too much for me too fast. But I want more!!! I can't help but think of all the times my parents tried to kick me off of my comp as and 8 year old coding basic http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/biggrin.gif. I wonder how I'll turn up when I get older...

04-19-2001, 05:07 PM
i cannot believe the level of professionalism and all-out talent spawned from this board, and good chunk of you are under the age of 20!

myself, i am "late bloomer" when it comes to coding (started at 22, now 26), and now i am really starting to regret the fact that i didn't start 10 years prior.

the only solice i have is that maybe in the near future my son will have his name on this board. he is six now, so i'll see if he'll be up to it by the time he's 8 http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-20-2001, 06:57 AM
Well it's interesting to note that even though our ages differ, the timepoint when it all happened seems to be somewhat in the region of 8 - 10 years ago.

What did happen to the generation using computers in that time of history?

Was it John Carmack and his epic games who changed us all into codehacking gamelovers?

I personally believe that someone that started out more than 10 years ago has a very small advantage using the experience he/she gained then, over those who started fairly recently.
(Although the learning caps of a person decline somewhat after 30 http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/tongue.gif )

This is because of the giant leaps of technology and software that has been made since then, which have altered the conditions for learning and using coding/programming to produce desireable goals.

Goals that could not have been seen without the new software, games and hardware of today.

And most of all, the AVAILABILITY of knowledge, like in this forum. 10 years ago it was books, today its webforums dedicated for experienced and inexperienced people of all ages to meet and learn from eachother in an alarming rate.

This is a rolemodel for ALL science... and maybe even for future democractic issues.

04-20-2001, 09:20 AM
I would really love to work on your graphics engine and help you out. I too want a sort of "team" to develop with. But I fear that I lack experience. I hope you find someone

04-23-2001, 07:17 PM
Well since we're all here...

I'm a late bloomer myself. Always wanted to learn programming and felt that I would like it. I started at about 18 or 19. Before that I spent my days reading about chemistry and physics.

I wanted to do 3D Graphics badly so I began thinking about the math involved with it. Keep in mind that I was clueless about d3d and ogl. I used Windows GDI to do my 3D graphics. I had code that did, cubes, cylinders, simple primitives, z-buffering (or should I say z-ordering), texturing (but no filtering) of any sort.

When I finaly found out how to use GL, I resisted, because it made the job much easier! Trust me, it's a pain to use 2D operation to do 3D.

Well, that's the interesting part. Now I'm like all you guys and 24.


04-23-2001, 11:54 PM
My tuppence worth..

Started coding at the age of 16.. (pretty late in life really)

I am 24 now.. still in my 1st job as a games programmer on consoles, which I started about 2 1/2 yrs ago. As for getting into the games industry.. I just had a really lucky break I guess.. One of the directors found my old webpage when I was currently droping out of uni (bored the pants off me, Hell I got marked down for optimizing my assembler project!!) and offered me a job.

Had to relocate 350 miles to the south coast, but its nice down here.. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I guess I'm one of the last newcomers into the games industry that doesn't really have "good" qualifications. Unless you learn very quickly, I'd say it'd be rather difficult to get in without qualifications in maths, physics etc..

TBH I thought Matt was in his late 30's! http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif (sorry Matt, hehe )


04-24-2001, 03:16 AM
I'm 32, would LOVE, to program OpenGL 12 hours a day, BUT......

Finally. Someone who is older than me. I though I was the only 30+ person here. I wish I knew what I did now at age 20.

I only started OpenGL 2 years ago. I havnt been able to do any commercial GL stuff yet, but I have got my own page/site up and it got rated best OpenGL site in South Africa. http://home.global.co.za/~jhorn

04-24-2001, 07:38 AM
glad to see a lot of you younger guys are able to spend a lot of time on something you love - stick with it.

I love coding, but with a busy family and 40+hr work week, I'm lucky to get in a couple of hours a day doing my own stuff, which makes it difficult to get anything done. I'm working on a 3d charting tool - yeah, it's not original, but I'm trying to add some features which make it a little better than most.

Oops, I just used up 5min of my two-hour development window - bye. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-24-2001, 12:21 PM
Hi, I'm 21 and just been offered a job with a well respected games company. I'll be writing 3D engines. I've been programming for 12 years now, I go through stages: sometimes I'll get really annoyed with sitting in front of a computer not doing anything new, then other times I'll sit there and code 10 hours a day.

I'm still at uni and recently we had to do an OpenGL coursework for our graphics module. I ended up spending about 70 hours coding for this coursework and it was only worth 20% of the module. (they recon that you should do about an hours work for 1%)

What I say to all the younger people out there is this: If you really enjoy writing game engines you are going to get a job in the games industry (if you want it that is). I know people on my course who have decided that they would like a career in games but they dont really care whether they get into games or accounting!

04-24-2001, 12:25 PM
PS. If you want to see the demo that I produced for my gfx coursework it is available here (http://www.ianhickman.com/applets.php3)



04-24-2001, 07:00 PM
Well, what the hell. I'm 29. I started programming when I got to college (age 18). I have a wife (age 29) and 2 girls (ages 1 and 3). I think computer graphics rocks, and I've been doing it ever since I got my first programming job (age 20).

The best job you can have in life is one that you'd happily do for free. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif


04-24-2001, 07:06 PM
Well, here is a guy from NVIDIA. cass, can you tell us how old is Matt? He says he is 19, but I do not believe it http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

[This message has been edited by Nil_z (edited 04-24-2001).]

04-25-2001, 05:21 AM
Matt really is 19. He is a (very productive) full-time driver engineer, full-time student at MIT, and he finds lots of time to post on this board.

Matt is one of the many amazing people at NVIDIA that makes it so fun to work here.


[This message has been edited by cass (edited 04-25-2001).]

04-25-2001, 06:18 AM
Whoa, whoa, whoa... Back up there a little Cass. Matt's a FULL time MIT student, FULL time nvidia driver developer - How can Matt be in two places at once? http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

BTW, did you know your homepage is down? http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/frown.gif

04-25-2001, 06:47 AM
Interesting thread. I didn't know that this many people were as fanatic as me about coding. I'm 29 by the way, been assimilated for the past 17 years.

I'm new to OpenGL, but spent a few years on the Amiga coding "filled vector graphics" as it was called back then. I'm a perfectionist and spent hours counting machine cycles to optimize my assembler code. I did achive "flawless" 3d graphics in HAM display mode though, for those who remember what that is.. :-)

Now I'd like to make an engine for MMP and giant virtual worlds. But first I'd like to create a language without the flaws of C++. Oh well, my dreams have always been too big!

About degrees and studies.. today and a couple of more years it may work to just learn by oneself, but I think that in 10 years the job market will be saturated even for us. Then you'll need the papers. So a 14 year-old should not skip school and college. There's no contradiction between college and being a good coder.

And yeah, get out once in a while.. I regret I didn't!

04-25-2001, 07:17 AM
Yes, I know my web site is down. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/frown.gif

Waiting on my DSL to get connected.

04-25-2001, 08:11 AM
So, one other 'relic' here is 36... I was born in december '64... Relic? Who's the oldest geezer?


I've been writing game code since about '81 and had my own game company back in '82. I first started 3D graphics back in '85 and OpenGL back around '94. It sure was hard to give up my old software rendering, but the speed and low cost got me going. These daze I'm in tech heaven, with the NVidia boards trashing all the old limitations.

For the last several years I'd been pretty active with the OpenGL Game Developer's email list, but that seems to be slowly dropping off the face of the earth. sniff...

For all you "youngsters", keep on coding! It only gets better and better. I'm writing stuff and seeing things working in real time that I would have never believed 10 years ago. I shudder to think of what I'll be wired into 10 years from now.

Keep in mind that if you can code, code well and complete projects (alone even better) then graphics and games has job positions for you. I've been a professional graphics coder for 17 years now (wow and ouch!) and anytime that I see a capable problem solver with a friendly additude I mark that person for the fast track. I've been in management for that last 3 years, and finding the "gems" in my staff is one of the best parts of the job- it's like finding yourself several years earlier: coding like crazy, taking math and algorithms, coding at nite on personal projects and still reading all the journals and web sites that people put up demoing their new techniques.

Keep in coding everyone, this ride just keeps on getting better!


Tim Stirling
04-25-2001, 10:01 AM
Originally posted by Deiussum:
I'm not sure I know what a heek is exactly either... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

did I type heek, well you know I meant geek, damn keyboards why do the put the H next to G!!!

04-25-2001, 10:51 AM
Originally posted by Tim Stirling:
damn keyboards why do the put the H next to G!!!

What are you talking about? I have about an inch and a half of space between the G and H keys http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-25-2001, 12:01 PM
Its the little demon... http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/tongue.gif

[This message has been edited by Hull (edited 04-25-2001).]

04-25-2001, 04:56 PM
Hehe well, I guess it sounds like everyone around here...Well you can count me in too I wrote my first program when I was 8 on GW-BASIC (anybody even remember what it is? http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif
I'm 21 today but honestly, i've never been called a geek or anything like that. Opengl and C++ are great but DON'T get glued to your monitor all day. Go out... meet people...have fun..get plastered when you turn 21 (that was two weeks ago)...Then, you come back and start coding..Believe me, you'll be alot more inspired and you'll learn quicker and be more productive. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

04-25-2001, 07:10 PM
Well, if everyone else is doing this, far be it from me to stay away http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

I got started with a Commodore 64 when I was in 6th grade. I made a few simple programs in BASIC and also typed in a lot of machine language code from a magazine called Compute!'s Gazette (sp?). This is, of course, inbetween games of Pools of Radiance http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif.

I had some little programming classes in high school, enough to get me started. The programs we had to do were super-boring (I wanted graphics) so I recreated the atari game ATAXX and did some mandelbrot sets on our school's apple IIe's. Let me tell you, that teaches you patience. The mandelbrots took 6 hours to render a single image.

I went to college and grad school for physics and math. I always tried to pick projects that let me do programming (now in C++). After I'd been in grad school for a while, a friend of mine and I started to use OpenGL to visualize some of our data. I was hooked instantly and found that I enjoyed that more than I did physics so I left with my masters and went looking for a job in the business.

I now get to do graphical simulations of natural phenomena with OGL. It's pretty much the ultimate job...I love the immediate feedback you get from graphics work http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I noticed everyone else was giving advice, so here's my 2 cents: If I had to choose one part of my formal education that's helped the most, it'd be the math. I slogged through the stuff day in and day out in grad school (high energy physics theory) and it has paid off to the utmost. It would take me 5 hours to read a three page HEP paper, but I can pick up most Siggraph papers and understand them in a few minutes. I think it's becoming more and more important to have good math skills as the graphics techniques become more advanced. Note the number of posts to this board about math topics: rotations, quaternions, coordinate system transformations, bump mapping, etc. The kicker about math is that it's not as exciting (to me) as the pretty images, so although I had the motivation to learn OpenGL on my own, I don't think the same would have been true for some of the advanced math. Something to think about if you're considering skipping past school....

I almost forgot to mention, I'm 26 now and also feeling a bit old compared to some of the people around here like Will Hunti...er, Matt over there http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif.

Thanks to everyone for contributing to this board http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif I'm hoping I can give as much back as I've gotten from it.

-- Zeno

04-25-2001, 10:27 PM
Originally posted by Psyche:
Well you can count me in too I wrote my first program when I was 8 on GW-BASIC (anybody even remember what it is ?)

You know, I started with a Laser 200 using its flavour of BASIC in 1983 (I was 7). Then I had an Atari 800XL, 520ST, 1040ST, Falcon 030 and some PCs...

I remember GW-BASIC very well and I still have a copy installed on an old 8086 (or is it a 80286 ?) laptop !!!! Dunno if I remember how to code it , though (GFA-Basic appeared at the same time on Atari and it was far better... and that's about at that time that I started Assembler 68000 and then 68030 and DSP56001 on the Falcon).

Funny to hear about those old programming language !



04-26-2001, 12:04 AM
some of my details are on my cv, viewable on my site ( url in profile )

Tom Nuydens
04-26-2001, 12:50 AM
I guess I should contribute my share of programming nostalgia.

I'm 22 years old now. My first real computer was a 16 Mhz Mac, with an amazing 8bpp color display running at 640x480 resolution. (This was very impressive at the time)

My first programming experience was with "RoboWar" (http://www.robowar.co.uk/), one of those robot programming games. You wrote the AI scripts for the robots in Reverse Polish Notation. I was 13 years old when I got into that.

At the time, I didn't have the faintest idea of the theoretical background of what I was doing. It was only later, when I got to college and started doing "real" programming, that I realized that I was actually writing finite state machine-based AI on a virtual machine that was programmed in Reverse Polish Notation http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/smile.gif

I started doing 3D graphics immediately after I started college, and I've been pretty fanatic about it ever since. I was lucky enough to get a job as a 3D engine developer right after I graduated, so graphics are now a full-time occupation for me.

- Tom

04-26-2001, 02:00 AM
>>So, one other 'relic' here is 36... I was born in december '64... Relic? Who's the oldest geezer?<<

Beat'ya, I'm born in August '64. Actually I feel more like I lost this poll now. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

I program for about 20 years now and haven't done much else than graphics with computers since then. I have a CS diploma (actually took CS because of 3D graphics!) and do OpenGL for a living.

04-26-2001, 04:51 AM
Originally posted by Psyche:
[B... DON'T get glued to your monitor all day. Go out... meet people...have fun..get plastered when you turn 21 (that was two weeks ago).[/B]

Or come up to Canada and get plastered when you turn 19 (18 in P.E.I) The beer is better anyway. http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boards/ubb/wink.gif

Don't Disturb
04-26-2001, 05:19 AM
Isn't it wierd how you are legally allowed the responsibility of procreation at 16 (I'm in England), but you're not allowed to buy a drink until two years later?

04-26-2001, 11:26 AM
>>Isn't it wierd how you are legally allowed the responsibility of procreation at 16 (I'm in England), but you're not allowed to buy a drink until two years later?<<

when will the government realise young adults have a valuable contribution to make to society.

04-30-2001, 12:15 PM
i think that you need a good girlfriend

05-01-2001, 05:11 AM
hi im 21 years old
i'm talented programmer but very lazy. i'm beginner in opengl but is seems very interesting and i'm highly motivated to learn it despite my laziness. Anyway, what i meant to told you is that here in Yugoslavia you can buy drinks, cigarettes at any age. Only if you have money and can walk. ;(