Baylor Hosts Regional "Tech Olympics" Saturday

Nov. 3, 2006

by Frank Raczkiewicz

Twenty teams from different universities around Texas will be on the Baylor University campus Saturday, Nov. 4, for the regional contest of the IBM-sponsored Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC), a competition that brings the brightest computer programming college students together for a true "battle of the brains."

The regional contest will be held from noon to 5 p.m. in room 112 of the Rogers Engineering and Computer Science Building on the Baylor campus.

Teams are made up of three students and led by a coach. The teams face a series of 10 complex, real-world computer programming problems, which have to be completed in five hours. Completing these problems is the equivalent of an entire semester-worth of computer programming. The team that correctly solves the most problems, in the least amount of time, wins the competition.

Baylor is one of six universities in the central United States holding a regional contest. The top performing team out of the six regional sites will get the chance to compete at the World Finals, which will be held in March in Tokyo, Japan. Last year, more than 5,000 teams from nearly 1,600 universities in 71 countries competed for a chance to go to the world finals, which was hosted by Baylor in San Antonio.

With IT skills shortages around the world and the rapid pace of change in the technology industry, innovation and collaboration at the university level are essential. This contest gives young computer programmers the opportunity to experience the world's most advanced technology, an experience that will help pave their developing career paths.

In an increasingly competitive global economy, the IT leaders of tomorrow will be pursuing innovations which will come from a fusion of several different disciplines -- advanced business integration and analytics; hardware, software and services integrated into an open computing environment; and increasingly important technologies such as wireless and nanotechnology.

The ACM-ICPC started in 1970 as a competition at Texas A&M, but quickly gained popularity as a way to challenge the top computer science students within the U.S. and Canada. ICPC has since evolved into a global contest with regional competitions that advance teams to the world finals. ICPC has been headquartered at Baylor since 1989.

For more information, contact Dr. David Sturgill at (254) 710-6828.

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