You know how it is, you learn a skill (Programming in my case) because you see the results of others. Looking at the fruits of their labors, you say, "wow! I want to be able to do that." So you start learning, take some classes, read some books, maybe like me you enroll in the Computer Science program. If you get good, you may even get a job using your new found skill. But, did the learning of this skill lead you to the place you wanted to be, all those long years ago?
When I first started programming, it was to automate the games I was already playing. Then I moved into trying to replicate the types of games that I had played before on the computer. But as it usually happens, the real world got in the way. Instead of learning how to animate sprites, I had to learn how to connect to a database. Instead of graphics, I had to learn about algorithms.
Now, I'm not knocking my job and the work I do. I rarely go to "Work" since I get to indulge in my passion for programming every day. But, I feel this need to give more than lip service to the original reason that I got into the "Biz" in the first place.
Believe me, in 25 years the landscape of game programming has changed so much that I hardly recognize it! And, I've tried to keep my feet wet in the technology the entire time. The time when the ability to draw a digital stick figure and write a great game around it (Lode Runner) is long gone. When I first made up my mind to bite the bullet and truly try to learn game programming, in depth, the technology seemed so complicated that I almost quit.
Well, here is the thing about games, the are not all created equal. Sure Sudoku is a "Game" per se, but not really related to my true love, boardgames. So http://www.freedailygames.net languished for a few years without any upkeep. I even thought of just shutting it down, but according to Google analytics, I have a few very loyal customers. And, now with the new technology of Silverlight, I thought that updating my site with a Silverlight implementation of Sudoku would help me build my skills and give freedailygames.net a tech boost.
Well, here is my take on Sudoku in Silverlight.
And here is a zip file containing the entire Visual Studio 2008 Project.