Three Top-15 Teams in Programming Competition!

Stony Brook's student programming teams did us proud again at this year's ACM Regional Programming Contest, held at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken NJ on November 14, 2004. Our top team finished 6th of the 65 teams representing 30 schools in the New York Region, solving 5 problems. Only the regional champion New York University (NYU) solved more, with six.

The Stony Brook 1 team of Amitabh Basu, Dhyanesh Damania, and Seung-Joon Park were even better than this outcome indicates, however. They failed to capitalize only due to an unfortunate failure to capitalize.

The first problem of the contest is traditionally designed to be so easy as to be solvable by every team, so no team goes home empty handed. Indeed, 55 teams managed to solve it, with none requiring more than three submissions. Team 1 quickly produced a logically correct solution, but made the trivial error of typing ``TO'' instead of ``to'' in a simple print statement. Judges in the contest only report whether a solution is correct or not, without giving any hints as to why. Team 1 spent seven painful submissions and much more time than any other team in looking for the logic error which wasn't there.

Despite this setback, they showed considerable character in working their way back from 28th position after one hour of competition to finish 6th. They clearly would have contended for the championship had the judge not been ``T''-ed off.

The Stony Brook 2 team of Justin Seyster, Yi-Lun Ruan, and freshman substitute Karl Jin finished a strong 9th in the region, making Stony Brook one of only two schools with two top-ten finishes. Teams 1 and 2 beat every other Long Island team even without anchorman Mose Wingert, who could not attend due to the early arrival of his twin children simultaneously with the contest!

The Stony Brook 4 freshman-sophomore team of Jonathan Huang, Ban Luc, and Sagar Pilania solved 3 problems and came in a very impressive 14th position, making Stony Brook the only school with three top-15 finishes. They may have been the top freshman-sophomore team, and gained the experience needed to lead the team next year.

The Stony Brook 3 team of Yoni Fogel, Gabe Templeton, and Yiannis Pericleous suffered through four machine crashes to finish above the median in a quite respectable 24th place. They will also all be back for more next year.

See an interesting blog posting from the Rutgers team, describing the impact of the Stony Brook teams at this year's contest.

The Yale Daily News published an article about this programming contest and Yale's four teams, even though they didn't do as well as Stony Brook...

Team 1 photos with and without official Citigroup umbrellas. Left to right: Seung-Joon Park, Dhyanesh Damania, and Amitabh Basu.

Team 2 photos with and without official Citigroup umbrellas. Left to right: Karl Jin, Yi-Lun Ruan, and Justin Seyster.

Team 3 photos with and without official Citigroup umbrellas. Left to right: Yoni Fogel, Gabe Templeton, and Yiannis Pericleous.

Team 4 photos with and without official Citigroup umbrellas. Left to right: Jonathan Huang, Sagar Pilania, and Ban Luc.

Previous years results include:

The activities of the Stony Brook Programming Teams are sponsored by a generous grant from Citigroup.