Algorithm Competition Official Rules and RegulationsEligibility | Registration | Qualification Round | About the Tournament | Prizes | Conditions of Participation
Overview of the Tournament
No purchase necessary to enter or win. The tournament is void where prohibited.The 2005 TopCoder Collegiate Challenge ("TCCC") Algorithm Competition will take place between January 11 and March 11, 2005. It will consist of one (1) online qualification round, four (4) online elimination rounds and three (3) onsite final rounds, being the Semifinal, Wildcard and Championship rounds. The prize purse for this competition is $60,000 in cash. Up to 150 competitors will win a cash prize, and for competing in Online Round #1, up to 500 competitors will receive a participatory prize. The top 24 finishers in the online rounds will advance to the onsite Semifinal and Championship rounds, being held at the Santa Clara Marriott in Santa Clara, California, USA on March 10 and 11.
Employees of TopCoder, Inc. and of all official tournament sponsors, regardless of commitment date as sponsor, including any companies involved in the production (including prize suppliers), implementation and distribution of this tournament and their advertising or promotion agencies, parent companies, service providers, agents, officers, subsidiaries or affiliates, or any other persons or entities directly associated with the tournament and members of the immediate families and/or persons living in the same household as such persons, are ineligible to enter the tournament. If a competitor's employer signs up as an official sponsor of the tournament after December 20, 2004, then that competitor will be disqualified from participating further in the tournament. TopCoder members who are performing internships for any official tournament sponsor between December 20, 2004 and March 11, 2005 are also ineligible to compete.
Qualification Round - 12:00PM EST Tuesday, January 11 - 12:00PM EST Wednesday, January 12, 2005
The Qualification Round will be open for 24 hours from 12:00PM EST Tuesday, January 11 through 12:00PM EST Wednesday, January 12, 2005. Each competitor may participate in the Qualification Round at any time during the 24 hours. Competitors may only attempt to qualify one time during the 24 hours.
The Qualification Round will consist of only two phases: the Coding Phase and System Testing Phase.
Note: The Qualification Round will not include a Challenge Phase.
All competitors who have qualified for an online round will be assigned to a specific room. TopCoder will determine all room assignments prior to the start of each online round in the TopCoder Iron Man format, which assigns members to rooms according to tournament seed such that the higher seeded members are assigned to the lower numbered rooms. The dates and times of the online rounds of competition are as follows:
Scoring and Advancing during Online Rounds
After each round of competition, the winners from each of the assigned rooms will be identified and will advance to the next online round. Room winners are defined as the top scorer from each room. To be considered a room winner, a participant must have positive (i.e., greater than zero) points. Coder advancement in all rounds is determined by comparing the total point values from all three phases of the round (see Competition Round Structure) for each coder. In order to advance, a coder must finish each round with a positive (i.e., greater-than-zero) point total. The structure of the online rounds is as follows:
With the exception of the Qualification Round, each online and onsite round of competition consists of three phases: the Coding Phase, Challenge Phase, and System Testing Phase. (Note: The format of these competition rounds is similar to the format of the Single Round Matches. The rules in place for the Single Round Matches as of January 11, 2005 will also apply to the online and onsite rounds of the TCCC.)
The twenty-four (24) advancers from Online Round #4 will travel to the Santa Clara Marriott on Tuesday, March 8th or Wednesday, March 9th to compete in the Semifinal round of the tournament being held on Thursday, March 10. All contestants must arrive at the Santa Clara Marriott no later than 4:00 PM PST on Wednesday, March 9th. All contestants must confirm their attendance at the onsite rounds no later than 5:00 PM EST on Friday, February 18, 2005. If a contestant is unable to attend the onsite rounds, he/she will forfeit his/her eligibility to receive any prizes awarded to onsite finalists, and his/her spot in the tournament will be given to the next highest overall scorer from Online Round #4.
TopCoder will provide travel arrangements for each competitor, up to a cost of $1,000 per person. (That is, if a contestant's airfare is greater than $1,000, the contestant will be responsible for the difference between the cost of the airfare and $1,000.) TopCoder will also provide ground transportation to and from the airport, as well as hotel accommodations and certain meals for each contestant. All other expenses are the responsibility of the contestant. TopCoder will not provide travel or lodging accommodations for competitor guests at the 2005 TCCC.
TopCoder will determine the room assignments for the Semifinal rooms prior to the start of each Semifinal round, in a manner such that the average competitor rating (following the Qualification Round) for each room will be similar. The dates and times of the onsite Semifinal and Championship rounds are as follows:
The Semifinal Round will consist of three (3) rooms of eight (8) coders each. The winner in each room will advance to the Championship Round. The 2nd and 3rd place finishers in each round will participate in one (1) Wildcard Round. The winner of the Wildcard Round will also advance to the Championship Round.
The Championship Round will be a single round of four (4) coders. First, second, third and fourth place in the Championship round are determined by comparing the total points of each coder, with the highest point value placing first. The winner of the Championship Round will be the coder with the highest point total for the round. In the event of a tie in the Semifinal and/or Championship rounds, the tie will be resolved in the following manner (in order):
Contestants must not cheat. All ideas for any code and/or challenge submitted must be the contestant's alone.
Winners in each round of competition will be those competitors who win the most points in their respective rooms. All decisions relating to the viability of submissions, the ranking of submissions and all other matters pertaining to the tournament shall be within the sole discretion of TopCoder or its designee and shall be final and binding in all respects.
Prizewinners will be notified via e-mail within 10 days of the completion of each round that they have won a prize. Room winners from Online Rounds #1, #2, and #3, as well as all contestants who advance to Online Round #4 must complete the following documents by 9:00 PM EST on Wednesday, February 2, 2005:
As a condition of participation in the tournament, all information provided by you in your TopCoder member profile must be comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date. TopCoder may require you to complete an additional registration form to register for the tournament. In order to be eligible to participate in the tournament, you must have completed any and all registration forms required by TopCoder.
As a condition of winning and redeeming a cash prize, winners will be required to return by Wednesday, February 2, 2005 a completed (i) competitor questionnaire, (ii) Affidavit of Eligibility and Liability and Publicity Release, and (iii) IRS Form W-9 or W-8BEN, as appropriate, if one is not already on file with TopCoder; and by Friday, February 18, 2005 a completed travel form. In completing the Affidavit of Eligibility and Liability and Publicity Release, a winner (a) confirms his/her eligibility, (b) represents and warrants that he/she has not cheated; that the idea for the code and/or challenge submitted is his/hers alone, (c) verifies the accuracy of the demographic information submitted to, and contained in, the TopCoder member database, (d) authorizes TopCoder to publicize the tournament's results, (e) agrees to sign any applicable forms required by tax authorities, (f) licenses to TopCoder rights to all information submitted during the tournament (including rights to source code and other executables), and (g) releases TopCoder from liability arising out of any prize won. TopCoder requires contestants to complete the Form W-9 or W-8BEN for tax reporting purposes. If prize notification is returned as undeliverable, or if the winner fails to return the questionnaire, Affidavit, or the W-9 or W-8BEN, as specified, the winner will be disqualified and the prize money won by the disqualified winner will be forfeited. Providing false information in the registration process or in the required forms described in this paragraph will disqualify a winner.
By participating in a tournament and redeeming a prize, a winner releases and agrees to hold harmless TopCoder, its affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies, sponsors, and prize suppliers, and all of their respective directors, officers, employees, representatives and agents, from and against any and all liability for any loss, property damage or damage to person, including without limitation, death and injury, due in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from or arising out of participation in this tournament, or participation in any tournament-related activity, or the receipt, use or misuse of a prize. TopCoder specifically disclaims all liability associated with, and makes no warranties with regard to, any prize given.
In addition, all prizewinners agree to cooperate with TopCoder's publicity efforts, without further compensation. This includes the agreement to use their name, handle, address (city and state) and likeness for publicity purposes, where legal, for this or similar future tournaments, and to use the statements made by, or attributed to, the winners relating to TopCoder and any and all rights to said use, without further compensation. Furthermore, all prizewinners agree to promptly notify TopCoder if a third-party, including a tournament sponsor, contacts the prizewinner regarding employment opportunities and/or media interest as a result of the prizewinner's participation in the tournament.
TopCoder reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to revoke any and all privileges associated with competing in this tournament, and to take any other action it deems appropriate, for no reason or any reason whatsoever, including if TopCoder suspects competitors of cheating, tampering with the entry process, the operation of the Web site, or the tournament process, or otherwise being in violation of the rules. TopCoder reserves the right to cancel, terminate or modify the tournament if it is not capable of completion as planned for any reason, including infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention or technical failures of any sort.
The tournament is void in whole or in part where prohibited by law.
A list of tournament winners by coder handles will be available on the web site at http://www.topcoder.com/tc, and will be displayed for at least 3 months after the end of the tournament.
This tournament is brought to you by TopCoder, Inc. (http://www.topcoder.com/) 703 Hebron Avenue (now 95 Glastonbury Blvd), Glastonbury, CT 06033.