NWC to host regional programming contest

Northwestern College will play host to 17 three-student teams representing five colleges in a regional competition of the 35th annual IBM-sponsored Association for Computer Machinery International Collegiate Programming Contest, also known as the Battle of the Brains, on Saturday, Nov. 6. Teams from Northwestern, Augustana College, Dordt College, Morningside College and the University of South Dakota will compete in Van Peursem Hall.

Northwestern will be one of 17 sites in the north central region, which includes Iowa, Kansas, Manitoba, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, western Ontario and Wisconsin. At least one team from the region will advance to the 100-team world finals, which will be held in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, Feb. 27–March 4.

Northwestern had programming teams advance to the world finals in Stockholm, Sweden, in 2009 and Harbin, China, in 2010. Only 13 other U.S. universities, such as Duke, MIT and Stanford, qualified for the world finals two years in a row.

Six teams from Northwestern will participate in Saturday’s contest, which challenges students to solve real-world problems using open technology and advanced computing methods under a grueling five-hour deadline. The team that solves the most problems correctly in the least amount of time is declared the winner.

The Battle of the Brains is the largest and most prestigious computing competition in the world, with students from colleges and universities in approximately 90 countries on six continents participating. About 22,000 students compete.