Tuesday, May 19, 2015

ICPC World Finals 2015 and Twitter

I've been trying to put my thoughts together to tell you something about the World Finals going on right now in Marrakech (photo on the left is from the official photo archive).

ACM ICPC always gathers really passionate and professional people, and together they do amazing things. Be it contest judges, event organizers, the analytics team or the sponsors from IBM - everybody always goes out of their way to make the event better than ever. This year I have another confirmation of this with the new ICPC Live team which are almost all my good friends (more details). A group of people who to the best of my knowledge have never been involved with broadcasting and live sports coverage, are getting ready to bring the programming contest live coverage to a new level - tune in tomorrow and see for yourself!

Of course, this passion is also seen really well in the participating teams themselves. The team from my alma mater, Moscow State University, have been preparing really hard to try and beat the overwhelming pre-tournament favorite, SPb ITMO. They've solved a lot of training contests and are paying attention to every little detail to make sure they do their best tomorrow. The attention to detail reaches funny heights sometimes: the rumor has it, they've chosen different T-shirt colors this year (gold on dark red instead of the traditional red on white) because the old color combination always resulted in second place for good MSU teams, not the first place - this happened four times. This is just a superstition, but they have of course did the more serious preparation very well, too. Good luck Gleb, Victor and Mikhail!

One might say that in both examples I'm praising my friends, and that's no surprise. I think that I'm writing about my friends because I know the most about them, but I'm pretty sure that almost everybody else involved with ACM ICPC has similar stories to tell about their friends - and that's how a great community is formed! Feel free to share your stories in comments.

I've realized that I don't have enough courage and energy to write a live blog about the World Finals tomorrow, so I've set up a Twitter account that I'll use to post some news and comments instead. Please follow :)

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