HKUST Hosts ACM Collegiate Programming Contest (Hong Kong) 2009
Undergraduate computer wizards from 8 local tertiary institutes tested their skills against each other last Saturday (June 20) at the Hong Kong University of Science & Technology campus in this year's ACM Collegiate Programming Contest (Hong Kong).
Every year, the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) sponsors regional and international collegiate programming contests. They divide the world up into 16 regions. Each region has a regional contest, with the top two or three teams in each region going on to the international contest.
Since 1991, the ACM Hong Kong Chapter has been organizing a local contest in Hong Kong, modeling after the ACM contests in terms of objectives, format, and style. This year, fifty teams have been invited from the ten tertiary institutes in Hong Kong and Macau: The Chinese University of Hong Kong, The City University of Hong Kong, The Lingnan University, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, The University of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Baptist University, The Open University of Hong Kong, The University of Macau, and Macau University of Science and Technology.
17 regular teams and 10 observing teams took part in this year's challenge. During the contest, teams formed by three programmers had to compete against the clock. The software used for development is scheduled to be based on Microsoft Windows XP with Visual Studio.NET 2003 and Java 1.5.007 with Netbean 5.0. Each team is given six programming problems. They then try to write programs to solve as many of these problems as possible in four hours given. The team that correctly solves the most problems wins. If multiple teams solve the same number of problems, the team that solved them fastest wins. Expertise in quick-and-dirty hacking is usually more valuable than rigid software engineering techniques in such an environment.
After a remarkable day of an effort on the contest day, E++ from CUHK got the Championship. HKUST Team 1 comprised of Chen Qifeng, Li Yuliang, Yan Zhepeng won the 1st Runner-up Prize.
Yan Zhepeng of the award-winning team remarked that, "team collaboration is an important factor in the contest since only one computer is available for each team and we need to have good planning with the limited time given." He would also like to thank their coach Dr. YI Ke and PG coach LUO Ji who organize weekly training and give them valuable advices.
Following the contest, all the teams were able to relax and mingle with their fellow competitors from other institutes at the banquet.
Some snapshots of the day: