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TCO15 Regional India Event — A Run Down

By socialmedia In Uncategorized

Posted September 2nd, 2015

TCO Regionals are a welcome addition to topcoder platform. Recently, we concluded the Regional chapter in Jaipur, the Pink City of India. The event had all ingredients of a techie meet. Lots of food, a hackathon, technical speakers, tech quizzes and puzzles with 400 participants. Last but not the least, an ample amount of fun games (with goodies to be won), to relax the thinking minds.

The first step towards this was to decide an excellent venue. We were excited to partner with Manipal University, which provided a spacious auditorium, and a lot of ground support.

The booking of TCO Regionals India opened on 26th May. Amazingly, in the next 10 days, all 400 tickets were sold out and we had 100+ in waiting. We were blown away by the response. A staggering number of 82 teams registered for Hackathon.

Meanwhile, the topcoder team at Jaipur was gearing up to host the event. It was the first event in India, and team didn’t know what to expect. We were a bit nervous, but the encouragement from the community kept us going. We formed internal teams to manages activities during the event day, and also roped in Gen X of local colleges. The Gen X brought in fresh set of ideas and perspective. We would like to thank them all for extending their help and support, during the event.

Fast Forward to the event day 22nd of Aug, 4th Saturday of the month.

Registration began at 8 AM. People started arriving and collecting their id cards for the event.

In almost an hour, the whole auditorium was full. Everybody received a TCO Regional TShirt, sponsored by VistaPrint, along with their id Cards.

At around 9 AM, the event was jointly declared open by Manpreet Singh (General Manager, Appirio India) and Dr. Kumkum Garg (Pro President & Dean-Faculty of Engineering, Manipal University, Jaipur)

Maryam Norouzi (VP, Topcoder) gave a brief introduction about TCO. She called upon our CAB Member, talesforce, to share his topcoder journey. Surely, it must have been inspiring session for our new members.

We had 2 technical sessions in the morning. The session on “Programming Competitions and Data Science” was conducted by our affable topcoder veteran, Tim Kirchner. Mr. Tushar Mutreja (Global Managing Director, Salesforce) enlightened the audience about ‘Salesforce- The Customer Success Platform’.

The major attraction of the event, Hackathon, algorithm round 2D and TCC (Topcoder Collegiate Contest) finals. We had a spectator round, for all the members. 20 TCC winners who were selected from all over the country contested for the top slot. The excitement and accomplishment on their faces, was clearly discernible.

The time was 11:30am, and 48 hours hackathon which started on 20th by selecting API’s was about to end in 30 minutes. Members started rushing and started submitting what they had built. Meanwhile the non hackathon participants were having a good time at the fun stalls. The fun stalls provided ample opportunities to relax and earn some topcoder goodies. The activities included games like dart board, car race, othello, & Jenga. The technical stalls provided 30 min technical problems in various areas like SQL, Logical thinking, Converting code from one language to another. There were also day long challenges based on Salesforce, Git and mobile.

SRM was about to start by now and the time to charge the laptops with a cup of coffee to keep awake as next 2 hours were really crucial for all the participants. Algorithm round 2D and TCC finalists had separate sitting rooms and they started gathering there. 12:05 pm the whole event area turned to a silent zone. The only sound from the auditorium were the keystrokes and mouse clicks. All heads were into the laptops and the brain working fast to solve the problem. Code phase was followed by challenge phase and the leaderboard was the focal point for all. SRM ended and it was an excellent time for lunch with time to get clicked at photo booth. There were flashes, poses, selfies. The excitement of the first regional event was evident.

Post lunch was also packed with some excellent technical speakers.Tom Scott delivered an excellent session on Mobile apps with topcoder. Aravind Bharathy [kkab], a topcoder community member, presented about Git and GitHub. Anirudh Kala delivered a presentation on “Deep Learning”. Meanwhile the judges were huddled together evaluating the entries for the hackathon and selecting the top 9 winners. The 9 teams that made it to the list were CreativeAsHell, Vikings, bitShifters, Caffeine_hack, corecoders, ProjectX, silent_abyss, sapphire, Digerati. The 9 teams were asked to create a presentation and were scheduled to present their app in around 2 hours.

While the hackathon finalists were busy preparing their presentation, it was time for a break again. Refreshment, and stalls were witnessing excitement and big rush. There were groups from colleges who were posing in the photo booth and it was huge fun and noise in the venue. Event was already turning into a big party.

The stage was just right for RJ from Radio Partner, 94.3 My FM to enter. The RJ interviewed few people on their experience, and cracked few witty and funny one liners. A robotic dance number by Sachin [tailorsachin95], a topcoder member added the extra spice into the technology event.Surely, there is no dearth of talent in topcoder!!

The presentations for top 9 started. We had judges panel set and people hold their seats. This was the much awaited part of the event as something teams had created in the last 2 days on the theme was to be presented. Teams started coming one by one on stage and people seemed spellbound by seeing the apps they created.

Presentations ended and it was the results time. Results of algorithm round 2D, TCC final round, tech stalls winners. Three of our TCAs (Topcoder Campus Ambassadors), Rajdeep from JECRC, Shubham Ranjan from Manipal, Sumitra Dhakre from RCEW were felicitated for their commendable contribution to the community. TCC winners were announced followed by hackathon winners.

TCC winners:

$5000 hackathon India winners:

Finally, the “lucky draw” moment arrived. A glass pot contained the handles of all members who attended the event. A Samsung Galaxy tablet awaited its new owner. Lo and behold, the tab was claimed by Jhutan Debnath [doctopus]. The lucky draw marked the conclusion of the event, but we would like to hail it as a new beginning.

We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to all those who attended the event, and made it a success. We would also like to thank our sponsors (location partner- Manipal University Jaipur, merchandise partner- Vistaprint, radio partner- 94.3 my FM, snack partner- nasta delivery, immigration partner- xiphias, codeanywhere as our platform partner) who helped us bring TCO to India! Congratulations to all the winners and hope to see you all again in TCO16.