Danny Iachini’s Weblog

My Nerdy Stuff

Google Code Jam

Back in the middle of June, I received an email from some CompSci person at Penn State (and Adventurous Alex forwarded it to me as well, just to make sure I heard about it) that Google was having a programming competition this summer. Called the Google Code Jam, this competition is very similar to the International Collegiate Programming Competition (ICPC), hosted by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), which I participate in.  Naturally, I signed up as soon as I read through the rules and was really excited to get to compete with other nerds.

Last Wednesday into last Thursday, the initial qualification round took place.  There were three problems up for grabs, and solving any one of those three moved you into the first official round.  I started right at 7:00 last Wednesday working on the first (easiest) problem.  I got it working for the initial sample input and downloaded a submission input to run it on, only to find out that I hadn’t considered all the boundary cases.  After dinner and tennis (there was no rush – I had 24 hours…), I worked through it again, and attempted another submission, only to find a new border situation which I hadn’t thought of.  Long story short – after rewriting my solution from the ground up, I got a correct solution, and qualified for round one.

In just under 2 hours, I will be participating in round 1A, seeing if I can get one of the top 840 positions, in order to qualify for online round 2.  If I’m not one of the top 840 tonight, I get to try again tomorrow at noon in round 1B.  But after that, if I don’t make it, all my hopes and dreams will be shattered.  It would be really nice if I could move on through all of the rounds to win this competition, because that would be really awesome to get to check out the Google offices.  But at the very least, I’d like to show Google just some of what I can do, in hopes of landing my dream job.

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July 25, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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