The last two years of my life at RIT leaves something to be desired, as a result I've been itching to get out of here and go somewhere else that will help re-ignite my passion for learning and programming.
Nothing bad about RIT in particular, it's just how school systems are, requiring you to take a whole bunch of classes that have nothing to do with your major. I'm paying money to go to this school, and I don't think it's fair that I'm forced to take classes I don't want to take. I realize they're supposed to help make me more well-rounded, but why do I have to take so many of them?? I just know I could've gotten a better programming experience if I went to a different school, though that's what I'm hoping for by going to graduate school.
So, in trying to spark my passion for programming and making games, I'm thinking of going to Digipen in Washington state, or Southern Methodist University: Guildhall in Texas. I'm also looking to get a job for the next 6 months.
Overall, I know I want to try to develop a really cool game in my free time, and try to market it myself as an indie developer to try to make some money, and to help myself get my name out there to make it easier to be hired from a company. You know, good resume material. I'm also doing it to learn more about game programming, so it's an educational pursuit as well. I already have ideas in mind, though they're technically challenging and will take some time. However, I have thought about making a 3d fan version of ZZT, I just don't know if I'd have any lawsuit kind of stuff to worry about; if I did do such a thing, I know I probably couldn't sell it, but I'd encourage people to donate money if they appreciate the work. Anyway, just a thought, as I would love to see ZZT become almost mmo like material, or at least have online content sharing similar to Little Big Planet or what have you. One thing that would also psych me out, is if my game supported importing standard .zzt games; though as the engine is 3d, I've been considering taking it into the 3d realm, especially considering the popularity of Minecraft. The other games I want to make are technically challenging because they require some 3d physics stuff, obviously a 3d battle system with somewhat realistic targeting and reactions, and from there it's necessary to have a sophisticated animation system with something like rag doll support. I also reaally want to mess around with graphics and making things look cool and pretty!
Anyway, I'll be posting more code stuff soon, like a modified Vector2 class after the early somewhat naive version being critiqued by the Leander Hasty, lead programmer at 1st Playable Productions. I plan on putting up a Matrix_4x4 implementation, in which I first learned and started using the c++ "union" feature, allowing me to store and access data in a way that works with DirectX and OpenGL, or however I wanted; though I have to make tweaks to it based off of the recommendations of Leander, and rename a few things here and there. I also plan on writing a basic tutorial explaining rotation matrices and what they actually represent, as classes and books I have read had failed to explain them in an easy coherent way.
Oh, as a side note, I had a lot of fun the other night working on a threaded server to setup a basic protocol for a simulated game environment; I hadn't worked with threads before in C++, so I'm eager to add support for them in my 3D engine, Warp. Also on that note, I'll be adding a lot more on this engine, and making a project page for it with helper classes for you to feel free to use in your own projects. I'll also mention all the various books I've been reading, as well as the open source game engines I've looked at, to try to inspire my design to create a cross-platform 3d game engine. So the basic idea for my Warp Engine: it's a game engine that abstracts the hardware and software API's so you can write a game that works across multiple platforms without having to change much; the way to do this is through the use of interfaces and components implemented by a platform by platform basis. Oh, and another thing I would like to look into is adding support for processors with SIMD instructions so my Vector3 and Matrix4x4 class can be more efficient. Basically, there are too many things I want to do and to learn!! (:
I could ramble on for almost forever, so feel free to leave any thoughts if you might have them!