Thursday, November 4, 2004

Compute This! WC's Collegiate Programmers Take On Region's Best In The 29th "Tech Olympics," November 13

Chestertown, MD, November 4, 2004 — For the third year in a row, Washington College's Department of Mathematics and Computer Science will host a Mid-Atlantic regional of the “Tech Olympics,” the 2004-2005 Association for Computing Machinery's International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC), sponsored by IBM. Under the direction of professors Louise Amick and Austin Lobo, student programmers from Washington College, Drexel University, Rowan University, Temple University, United States Naval Academy and the University of Delaware will go head-to-head, laptop-to-laptop on Saturday, November 13, from 1-6 p.m. in the College's Goldstein Hall.

Washington College's two teams, the Wolves and the Wildcats—coached by professors Michael McLendon and Shaun Ramsey—will be pitted against some of the Mid-Atlantic's best in a grueling six-hour competition that tests the limits of their logic, problem-solving ability and command of today's most advanced computer architecture. Entering its 29th year, the ACM competition has grown into the largest and most prestigious contest of its kind, bringing the world's brightest collegiate programmers together to tackle a semester's worth of real world programming tasks in one afternoon, while vying for a spot at the contest's World Finals. The entire competition is conducted electronically with submissions made to a central site for independent judging.

“The teams are given seven problems to solve is six hours, and one-quarter of the teams don't solve even one problem, let alone all seven—it's just that challenging,” said Austin Lobo, associate professor of computer science. “Solving one makes you pretty darn good, but over the last few years our Washington College teams have averaged three, which put us among the top 20 teams last year from the Mid-Atlantic, the largest region in the ACM competition.”

There are as many teams in the Mid-Atlantic regional as there are in all of Europe.

“It's clear that our best students are as good as the best from neighboring universities,” he added, “and our computing infrastructure is top-notch.”

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