USC Programming Contest, Spring 2006

I’m typing this on my laptop in Mike Stalcup and Jon Lo’s room because I don’t want to be lonely in my room. It’s 3:32 AM, and I don’t want the day to end. It’s been great. Michael and Jon are messing with their computers, making Windows look like OS X or something completely new. Michael’s also trying programs that imitate Dashboard and Exposé.

I woke up at about 9:30 and washed my clothes. Two loads, one for whites and other for colors. Then I went to EVK for breakfast. I left for the USC Programming Contest, but when I was about halfway there, I realized I’d forgotten my programming books. I have two here, one for C++ (which is the textbook for CS 102) and one on Python Web Programming. I only used the former for looking up some info on strings.

The contest was good. From 1pm to 6pm, it was quite a big time commitment. But hey, I’m all about wasting time. 1pm to 2pm was a time for practice and getting set up. It’s a good thing they have this. It is definitely a good idea to go. They also provided food and drinks, but they had to be kept out of the computer lab at all times. The programs were all relating to elections. There were six different programs, A through F. These problems should be posted on the Programming Contest website soon. I solved A, C, and F.

Well, I didn’t actually solve C completely. I assumed that it was unreasonable for the same phrase to overlap with itself. Oh well. It would’ve only bumped me up one or two places, unless I solved another program after that. I’ll remember this for next time. So in the end, I solved 2 problems, and placed 10th overall. There were over 30 people there.

The top 4 got cash prizes, sponsored by Language Weaver, and I got a game – Battlefield 2. I think I did very well, considering that it was my first programming contest. I’ll definitely try it again next semester. I wonder if I should join the programming team. I imagine it’d be a lot of work and time. Still, it’s a good skill to have, and comes in handy in many other things.

They had pizza provided after the contest, and then I walked back with Nick Matelli. I should really do something for the USC Chess Club website. Oh well. When I have time and think of something. Speaking of which, the redesign deadline is coming up fast. Okay, this post has gotten long enough. Let me know if you want to know more about the programming contest.

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