Welcome to the TopCoder CS-Stem program.

Funded and supported by the U.S. government’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), our program brings TopCoder’s renowned software development community together with other partners in the fields of life skills, scientific mentoring and academic performance in a new effort to engage and inspire students in grades 6 through 12.

More About The Project


Register to become a TopCoder Member,
Join the DARPA Contests powered
by TopCoder
community, and start competing!


Lastest News

Have it in you to teach? SoCo needs you!
Posted by jmpld40 on June 11,2012 at 11:39 am EST

If you think you are a good programming instructor then the NoNameSite.com SoCo (School of Coding) needs your help in writing lessons for students. Join our content creation contest for creating javascript based lessons using waterbearlang. Plus 2 more contests coming up!

$1,500 Idea Generation Contest!
Posted by jmpld40 on April 22,2011 at 01:52 pm EST

We are seeking some great ideas and need your help. As part of the CS-STEM program and NoNameSite.com, we want to create some mass mobilizer games – an online or offline activity that mobilizes hundreds of people into pursuing a solution to the problem statement or opportunity.

There will be five $300 prizes so get thinking! Learn more and register here.

CoPilots on CS-STEM
Posted by bchops on March 31,2011 at 09:45 pm EST

CxC takes another step forward…

NoNameSite.com launched on February 28th (with special effort from Ghostar, quesks, cyberjag, and many others) .  With the site up and running, we are focusing our attention on developing the activities needed to keep it fresh and compelling.

A crucial component of that pursuit is our community of CoPilots.  Through the fall and early winter, the TopCoder Community provided some excellent ideas for games and other activities that would engage the interest of our target students.  We developed artwork around some of those ideas through Studio.  Studio really did its part – in many cases, the core ideas were re-themed with storylines and animation.  We now have a couple HTML5 renderings of these games that are just great.  While Ghostar shepherds these games towards completion, we need new CoPilots to help us complete the others.

Towards that end we recently posted several new CoPilot positions.  These are just a beginning – we will be running new idea generation contests and those will generate new opportunities.

And these opportunities are a little different than what you might find on other projects.  The job here is not simply to follow the process and post successful contests – although that remains the baseline task – the job is to guide the TC Community in building a simply awesome activity.

At this point we have a few tools to help drive and measure this.  For example, our new custom UI Prototype scorecards require competitors to add features beyond the specification in order to gain full points.   To measure our target community’s response to our ideas, we are deploying a beta zone where CS-STEM members can try out prototypes and comment on them.  Rapidly-built prototypes are crucial, as is incorporating change and chaos.  Use these tools, and suggest new ones, to guide the process and TC community into innovating, developing and refining the best possible games and activities.

If you’re interested in trying your hand as a CoPilot, we welcome you!  Prior CP experience a isn’t a factor.  You can sign up for one of our CoPilot listings, and you can also contact bchops anytime with questions.

For more information on CoPilot responsibilities, this wiki should prove useful.

Stay tuned to this space for tips, suggestions, and current thinking around CS-STEM CoPilots.

- bchops

NoNameSite.com is Live!
Posted by jmpld40 on March 15,2011 at 07:35 pm EST

After numerous contests, reviews, and designs, TopCoder is proud to announce our new Community for US teens ages 13-18; NoNameSite.com! We couldn’t have built this great Community without our TopCoder and Studio members, so thank you all!


And all other members who participated in the contests.

NoNameSite.com is now open for The Naming Contest and we’ve also got some other cool activities in the pipeline. Check out NoNameSit.com and your wonderful work! We look forward to further building this Community with your help. View all the action here.

Competitions Galore for 2011!
Posted by bchops on January 14,2011 at 10:10 pm EST

Happy 2011! At TopCoder, we are very excited for 2011 and all that it brings; especially with the launch of our CS-STEM project with DARPA, NoNameSite.com. Not only will this site promise to be a fun and rewarding place for 13-18 year olds to spend their free time but this project also brings the TopCoder community numerous avenues to earn cash as the site gets built.

In December alone, there was $55,000 in prizes for CS-STEM competitions. We are relying on our community (You!) to help us make this project successful and there are plenty of competitions and rewards available for all.

Have a great 2011 and we’re looking forward to seeing you competing!

CS-STEM Technical Details
Posted by bchops on January 12,2011 at 08:38 pm EST

The CS-STEM project is a set of applications TopCoder is working on for DARPA.  TopCoder is building a modern web-portal for education in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math), and will have additional focus on CS (Computer Science).  The site is geared towards middle and high school students in the United States.

Right now, we are building a social platform where students can register for the site, read forums, blog, and interact with other students.  This platform is based on Liferay and will run on Amazon EC2 virtual machine instances in a clustered environment.  Liferay information can be found here, and downloads here.  We have run a number of assemblies already that have developed documentation and approaches for installing Liferay, getting it set up, and getting the general sitemap up and running.  To save time, we are running lots of iterative assemblies.  This way we have functionality we can test and tweak right away and this allows us to be more flexible in the initial development.  We are going to develop some features this way, some through direct build contests, and most through the standard software development life cycle that TopCoder does well – starting with specification, then architecture and component production, followed up by assembly.

Liferay was chosen because it already offers a large portion of the features we need, including content management, forums, blogs, and social networking features and integration.  It is fairly easy to deploy on a number of different operating systems and database servers, and is robust enough to handle the traffic that we anticipate.  It is also nice and modular, allowing for fine-grained extension for the new features we need, like activities and custom controls.

In the coming weeks, we are going to have a number of different trial look and feels ready to be implemented.  When the soft launch is available in February, the user of the site will be able to switch between 4 different skins for the site, with the most popular one being the default for the finished site.  We will also have controls for users to submit name ideas for the completed site.  Right now it will be deployed at nonamesite.com, but once a name is chosen we will move to the final domain address.

Liferay activities will be designed and deployed through the content management system.  The framework for this will be an upcoming architecture competition.  The architects will decide how to embed the activities, whether as portlets, custom tags, or some other way.

In addition to the social networking and collaboration features of the site, we are also going to start building activities where users will complete tasks that help them learn about different facets of CS and / or STEM.  There is an architecture running now that will build the base API for activities to interface with Liferay and report usage numbers.

Overall there is going to be a ton of work to do in the coming months, so now is the time to get involved!

DARPA-funded project to spark computer science education
Posted by bchops on December 20,2010 at 03:54 pm EST

To boost computer science education and help middle and high school students strengthen their science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) skills before they enter college and the workforce, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded TopCoder a $5.57 million contract to develop a new virtual community featuring competitions and educational resources.
Read More…

Searching For The Next Generation Of Tech Innovators
Posted by bchops on December 20,2010 at 03:54 pm EST

Teens’ interest in gadgets is at an all time high. Cell phones, once a privilege for the few, are now as frequent in a young person’s life as school books. Game players are common, and most teens know how to use a computer.
Read More…

DARPA and TopCoder Seek to Change How Students Spend Time Online
Posted by bchops on December 20,2010 at 03:45 pm EST

TopCoder®, Inc., the leader in online programming competition, skills assessment and competitive software development platforms, today announced the company has been awarded a $5.57 million contract by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for the development of a new Internet-based platform for competitions and educational resources that will focus on realizing computer science, science, technology, engineering and math (CS-STEM)-focused goals for middle and high school students in the U.S. and beyond.
Read More…