The NASA-TopCoder Challenge
This is the second of a series of Experimental Marathon Matches that TopCoder is running in coordination with Professor
Karim Lakhani of Harvard Business School and Professor Kevin Boudreau of London Business School/MLab. The structure and
rules for these events are a departure from anything that TopCoder has run in the past, in that we are exploring the effects of
collaboration and information sharing during competition.
Participants in all groups may submit code written in any of the following languages: Java, C++, C#.NET, VB.NET, or Python. All sets of 20 will be isolated from one another so that there are no spillovers of information, discussions, or code amongst the groups. In addition, each team will be placed into a private competition with their own forum and standings information. Competitors will need to use the web-based interface for participating in the competition - no experimental rounds will be accessible from within the TopCoder Arena.
Keep in mind that there is no actual problem statement associated with the "registration" round.
After the registration period closes on October 28th, 2009, we may ask you some brief questions to help us us determine the groupings of 20. The email with the link to the brief questions will come from TopCoder and we request that you respond to it within 12 hours.
We ask that you register only if you plan to dedicate significant effort and time to this competition that begins on November 4, 2009 and will last for ten days, and you are willing to complete the contribution list (if applicable) and the Post-Competition Survey following the competition. In addition, the number of available spaces for competitors is limited and we will only allow 480 competitors into the competition with preference given to competitors who have demonstrated a high likelihood of participating in challenges after they register. Once registration is closed, and prior to the start of the competition, you will receive an email with your Group and Room assignment.
Harvard's Professor Lakhani has been active in the forums discussing this Experimental Marathon Series. His handle is karimlakhani and you can find further discussion here in the TopCoder forum discussions.
Please check out the rules link below for more detail.
Prize StructureCash prizes, an Invitation to View a NASA Launch, and T-shirts will be awarded as follows:
In addition, one $1,000 cash prize will be awarded to either the individual in Group A or the Room in Group B with the highest score. If this prize is awarded to a Room in Group B it will be divided according to the contribution lists for that Room.
Contestants must be active participants in order to be eligible to receive any prize. In both Groups A and B, active participation means working on the problem and submitting a reasonable attempt at a solution, including all required parts (e.g., solution description, contribution list in Group B), responding to any email inquiries, and completing all competition-related surveys, including the Post-Competition Survey. In Group B, active participation includes providing a contribution list as requested (including the final contribution list) whether or not a Contestants has submitted code during the competition, and may include, instead of code submission, productive participation in the Room forums.
You must be a TopCoder member, at least 18 years of age, meeting all of the membership requirements. In addition,
you must fit into one of the following categories.
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