In the challenging times of April 2020, a group of teachers reached out to us with a request: they needed a way to teach bridge online. Rising to the challenge, within a mere three months, we developed a concept and product that would revolutionize the way bridge is taught and learned. The Shark Bridge Teacher's Console was born, transforming the educational landscape for both instructors and students.
The Shark Bridge Company was established in June 2020 by a team of passionate individuals: Milen Milkovski and Plamen Panayotov from Canada, John Norris from Denmark, and Michael Woywode from Germany. Pictured from left to right are Plamen, John, and Milen.
The Journey Begins
It all started back in 1997. John Norris, a professional player and coder from Denmark, envisioned creating a bridge-playing robot that mimicked human strategy. He sketched numerous drafts and designs of how different modules could synergize. However, it was several years before these plans materialized into actual programming.
Milestones and Triumphs
- 2006: Shark's debut in the world bridge computer championship, finishing last.
- 2007: A leap forward, nearly reaching the semifinals.
- 2008: Shark advanced to the semifinals but narrowly lost to the eventual champion, WBridge5.
- 2009 & 2010: Victory in two consecutive individual world championships, showcasing the effectiveness of John's vision.
- 2011: Shark clinched the computer bridge championship, decisively defeating QPlus in the finals.
- 2014: Another championship win, this time against Micro Bridge in a thrilling, low-scoring final.
- 2016: A close semi-final loss against Wbridge5.
- 2018: Just shy of reaching the semifinals.
About the Team
Milen Milkovski: Since 2008, Milen has been a pioneer in developing bridge games for mobile devices. He played a crucial role in bringing Audrey Grant's bridge and iBridgeBaron to Apple and Android devices, both top-rated in the App Store. In 2014, he embarked on the ambitious project of Shark Bridge, aiming to create the most realistic and feature-rich computer bridge game. Milen's passion for bridge began at the age of 12, making his involvement in Shark Bridge a perfect blend of vocation and avocation.
Plamen Panayotov: A long-time bridge aficionado, Plamen is not only Milen's high school friend and bridge partner but also brings his expertise in business development to the table. His unique skills are essential in ensuring Shark Bridge becomes the most popular and enjoyable computer bridge game.
Michael Woywode: The latest addition to the team, Michael's expertise lies in modern WebApp development and design. He's the mastermind behind Shark Bridge's user-friendly bridge table, significantly enhancing the game's accessibility and appeal.
This journey from a simple idea to a globally recognized platform is a testament to the power of innovation, teamwork, and a shared love for the game of bridge.