THE BLOG
02/13/2012 02:31 pm ET | Updated Apr 13, 2012

Which University Won the Intercollegiate Programming Championship?

It was a Battle

And we're not talking figuratively here, we're talking literally. The top 12 Computer Science Universities in the world competed last Saturday in a code war. This was a battle for school pride. This was a battle for bragging rights. This was a battle to see which school has the most awesome programming students.

And it literally is a battle. Each team wrote the A.I. for a computer game. The contest is then the A.I.s from each team fighting each other where one will reign victorious over the others on the field of battle.

Each school had multiple teams competing. They were given the problem at 10:00am and had 8 hours to write an A.I. for the game. We selected a game A.I. because there is no perfect solution. And the best A.I. is not who can write the fastest or most esoteric code, it's who can come up with the best approach to playing the game. So a team of freshmen can be competitive with a team of graduate students.

school trophyThe winning team at each school received a sweet trophy (yes the trophy is a robot). In addition they went on to represent their school at the final, which was at 6:30pm PST last Saturday. And if your school wants to participate - sign up! Go to Windward Code War for links to the sign up information.

The students participating are the best of the best. They are attending one of the top 12 Computer Science Universities. And they're the students who are so into programming, they are spending their Saturday writing code for the pure intellectual challenge. The programming skill on display in this challenge is unprecedented.

You can watch the webcast of the final here..

world championsThe school that won the final gets an even sweeter trophy. We picked this because it is a simple and elegant design and that is the goal when writing code.

Plus the sailing ship plays into our company name as windward is a sailing term. But the main reason we picked it is it is beautiful and stands out. I think with this we've come up with a trophy that will make the football team jealous.

And who won? The University of Wisconsin, edging out the University of Massachusetts 502 - 468.
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More at The Windward International Collegiate Programming Championships.