Students travel to Sweden for programming contest

For three ambitious Purdue students, getting a problem solved in more than two seconds is just too slow.

“For computers, two seconds is plenty long enough if you make the program efficient,” said Nathan Claus, a junior in the College of Science. This April, Claus, along with Zhanibek Datbayev, a junior in the College of Technology and Arman Suleimenov, a junior in College of Science, will compete in the Association for Computing Machinery’s International Collegiate Programming Contest in Stockholm, Sweden. The competition is considered by some to be the world championship of computer programming.

“It’s an honor to be competing against some of the best coders in the world, especially during the finals,” Claus said.

Claus said the competition is based on speed and skill but also has a large focus on teamwork and efficiency. He said that since the team is only allowed to use one computer, one of the main challenges is dividing up work properly based on each team member’s skill level.

“I know (my team’s) strengths and weaknesses so I know which problems they’re going to be able to solve,” Claus said

Although the idea of flying around the world to compete might be intimidating to some, Datbayev said the team is excited and ready to compete.

“I’ve been participating in these kinds of competitions since high school,” Datbayev said.

“ ... We feel comfortable, and right now we’re preparing for it.”

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