At 07:10 PM 7/20/2004 +0200, you wrote:
Greetings mr. Carmack.
I do not expect to get any reply on this email because I know that you are always pretty busy. But in the light of Doom3 going GOLD (congrats man) I thought there might be room for a couple of questions from a big fan =)
Q: 1. How would you recommend me to approach the game industry? I am a 16 year old boy from Denmark, just 2 weeks from starting in high school, loving computers and computer games with all my heart, and a having a burning desire to learn more about the architecture of 3D grapchics programming and/or designing. Are there any specific educations that you can recommend?
A: Learn math and physics really well. Not just well enough to pass the tests, but well enough to teach the subject, because that is effectively what a programmer needs to do -- "teach" the computer.
The best way to get into the industry is to write game mods, because it lets you demonstrate your ability without having to create a complete game from scratch.
Q: 2. How did you get to the point where you stand today? I mean, it would seem to me that it takes some kind of supernatural intelligence to write engines for games like doom and quake2 and quake 3. Is it really possible for a normal human being like me to get into the industry, or does it take some kind of inborn talent? Just be honest here :-)
A: Many programmers are needed that are simply competent and hard working. Innate talent is always valuable, but
Q: 3. Due to the successes of your brilliant games, you don't really have to work, though you continue to work as usual. Have you ever thought about work half time or anything or is work all in your life? Do you have a family to take care of, or are you just a pasty-skinned super-intelligent nerd, nerdin' it out all day? =D
A: Half my time goes to www.armadilloaerospace.com, where I am building manned rocket ships. I have been married for four years, and have a baby boy on the way next month.
The reply is unedited, apart from the A's and Q's I have added, just to make it clear who's speaking
Also note that some of the answer for question 2 is missing, must have been ripped out between our mail servers... =/
I apologize for any spelling errors that might be in there, I never really expected him to reply anyway, so I didn't doublecheck my grammar before sending him the email
I could go and take screenshots of my inbox and email if you don't believe me, but im just too lazy for that right now. But take my word for it: I would never fake an email from JC just to get attention
Oh and by the way, its great news that Carmack are still undecided on retirering, and that he's stil having a great time programming. If he was here, I would just say "Keep up the good work, JC