September 18, 2020 TCO20 Southern Asia Regional Recap

The TCO20 Southern Asia Regional event was held on August 16th with amazing participation in each track of competition at Topcoder. We had a difficult time deciding on the schedule as we had to figure out how to allow members to pick and compete in multiple competitions according to their previous competition interests and opt-ins – Phew! 

The event started at 9:30 AM IST and I got the opportunity to launch the event, as I have for the past six years. This region is the closest to me and every year I look forward to personally meeting all the members I have seen competing. I tried my best to express how thankful we are to the community; because of them, these events are possible. Also thanks to our long time sponsor DigitalOcean for partnering with us once again.

After the launch, we had Jessie take over and talk to the community about how and what the various opportunities are for members at Topcoder. The newest addition being Gig Work Opportunities. Check them out if you haven’t yet! 

Later, adroc spoke about all the campaigns, product features, new programs and things we have done in the last year and continue to do for the community. He also spoke about how we are partnering with companies like Adobe, Episerver, Appium etc, to bring their new-age tech APIs or products to the community. With the emphasis being on skill-building, we have also started Skill Building Competitions and are coming up with a cool format to do interesting timed regular development competitions.

To get everybody warmed up from a typical lazy COVID-day morning we ran a quick scavenger hunt that got everyone out of their seats. We had submissions coming in very fast and it was Nightmare05, codejam and rajeshrathod who won Topcoder hoodies 🙂

Then it was time to kick start some competitions. What would be better to begin with than QA Bug Hunt for everyone to flex their debugging muscles before we get into coding competitions? 

winterflame was the copilot for the competition and had TutorialsPoint for members to test. It was extremely impressive to see the talented Southern Asia QA community find a record number of 350+ issues in the four hours provided to them. Phew! 

Later we had Qualifying Seed rounds for UI/UX Design and Algorithm Tournaments in parallel which allowed members to seed themselves for the Single Elimination Bracket Tournament later for each of these tracks.

This is how the brackets looked for Algorithm. It had some great names up.

Design and Algorithm Brackets

Later we had an hour break that included some really cool games which allowed members to have fun playing against each other within all these competitions. It was a good one hour break before the start of the nail-biting bracket tournament.

Before launching the bracket tournament for Design and Algorithm we launched the Dev Competition for members to take part in. The problem statement was simple and asked  members to visualize Topcoder Challenge Data. 

To help the developers deploy their applications, Peeyush Gupta held an amazing session on how to deploy your apps on DO.  Once again thanks to DO for sponsoring the event.

On the other side, the bracket tournament had begun. We had veteran Balajiganapathi join us with his expert views and commentary during the bracket tournament. We had great fun seeing the brackets move forward and understanding the competitors’ mindset during the contest. Most of the advancements were based on the seed as none of the members in that bracket were able to make a passing submission.

The most interesting round was 2A which had Chandnani and Vivek competing. We ran a poll which showed the audience inclined towards Chandnani throughout, and though he made a submission, it failed, and Vivek made it through to Round 4.

Later in Round 3 – or Finals –  we had two problems, one being fairly easy and focussed towards speed and the other one being the hard one of Div I Easy level. We had aryanc403 submit the easy one first and with no submissions on the hard one, he took the trophy home. 

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In the parallel session, the Design Bracket Tournament was getting heated with TCO19 Design Champion L.O.I against the new Southern Asia design sensation starck181995. Adam’s live judging along with expert commentary from veterans PereViki, systic and fajar.mln made it exciting. As every bracket ended, they presented submissions to Adam and had him pick one. Later they would question Adam to understand his thoughts on picking the winning submission. Some real good insight into the Topcoder Design Guru there. As the brackets progressed starck181995 held his nerve throughout the tournament to take the trophy home.

By this time, billsedison and winterflame were wrapping up the Dev and QA results. The Dev Competition was won by the amazing harishchennupa. Harish is the new age community member, super involved with the competitions, and has been doing a great job being active in the community and webinars etc. This was a much-deserved milestone for him and we hope to see him qualify for TCO Finals very soon. While on the QA side, the veterans codejam and SATKAN made sure they find some critical bugs and take the regional trophy home. Congratulations to the Veterans! There always so much to learn from them!

With the results and closing words, the day came to an end. These events are not possible without the help of many staff and members who help us in not-so-friendly timezones of theirs to bring this event to you. Thanks to all of those who helped and the community members who took out time to attend the event. 

Harshit Mehta

Sr. Community Evangelist


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