The Programmer of the Month this time is a family man who is also a self taught professional programmer who began programming in BASIC when he was just 8 years old. He is so passionate about it that both work and play combined, he programs for almost 9 hours a day!
Here’s more about our Programmer of the Month for November ’09, Josh Metzler!
Name: Josh Metzler
Institute/Organisation: I work for ISciences
Brief introduction about yourself (under 140 characters): I am a self-taught professional programmer. C++ is my language of choice, though I do program in other languages from time to time. I love solving challenging problems (programming or otherwise). I am married with three young children.
How/When did you start programming?
I wrote my first program (with help from my Dad) in BASIC on a PCjr when I was 8 or 9. I dabbled in BASIC from then until high school, when I was given a copy of Turbo Pascal. I didn’t take any CS classes in university, as it didn’t occur to me that CS was a possible career path. After graduating and doing some volunteer work, though, I got a job with some programming as a part of it that has gradually become mostly programming. I also found the UVA online judge and TopCoder, and now CodeChef.
What do you do when you’re not programming?
I spend time with my wife and kids, read books, do work around the house, or go to church. During the summer I play Ultimate Frisbee.
What do you like most about CodeChef?
There’s quite a bit I like about CodeChef. I enjoy the challenging problems, especially in the ten day competition format. With young children it isn’t easy to set aside specific chunks of time for competitions, but I can always find some time here and there to work on a problem. I also enjoy the opportunity to help others learn in the forums, and the variety of languages available to compete with.
How many hours a day do you program?
If I count both work and play, I probably spend 8-9 hours a day programming.
What’s your favourite book and why?
My favourite book is Ender’s Game because I haven’t read any Harry Potter. I’m currently reading a terrifying non-fiction book about climate change
called With Speed and Violence.
If you could eat dinner with any famous person (past or present), who would it be and what dish would you have?
I would have pizza, but I’m not sure on the person. Maybe Richard Feynman or C. S. Lewis.
What are your plans for the future?
I’m fairly happy with my job right now, though I have some interest in working in the finance industry. I am somewhat rooted in Ann Arbor, Michigan,USA, as my oldest child is in elementary school, we own our house and like our neighborhood, and we live near my family who helps with childcare. So, I don’t anticipate any major changes in the near future.
Update: Due to multiple requests the onsite contest is moved to January 10th, the online round will take place on November 21st at 7pm.
We are really excited to announce two contests in November. In addition to our 10 day algorithm challenge (Nov 1st – Nov 11th) we are also hosting our first ever “CodeChef Campus SnackDown.”
What is the CodeChef Campus SnackDown?
We will be holding an ACM ICPC style team contest with two rounds and cash prizes of Rs. 3 lakhs! The first round will take place online on November 21st from 4pm-9pm 7pm-12am. The top teams from this round will be flown to Mumbai for a final in-person round on December 5th January 10th. The overall winners will receive prize money and an opportunity to dine with Bhavin (Directi’s CEO)
Who is eligible?
Anyone can participate but only students attending college within India are eligible to participate in the final round (and win prize money).
International participants, worry not, we will be holding a team based contest within the coming weeks in which everyone will be eligible for prizes.
What is the format of the contest?
Standard ACM-ICPC style rules, teams of up to 3, penalties for wrong submissions.
What are the prizes?
We will be giving out Rs. 3 lakhs in prize money, the top teams from each institute will also be recognized and rewarded.
Full details will be announced shortly, so mark the date on your calendar and stay tuned…
By popular demand you can now view all submissions for practice problems which you have successfully solved. You’ve solved a problem in Java, you can now see how someone else solved it in C. Hopefully you will use this power for good, and learn from other members as well as assist those who are having trouble.
How else can we improve the site? What can we do, to help you become better programmers?
Let us know,
Aniruddha from the CodeChef team has put together a video tutorial for Puzzle Game . We hope to start including more content including articles, podcasts and additional videos in the near future. The video is embedded below and also on our wiki:
What do you guys think? Are video tutorials helpful? What other content can we produce that will help you become better programmers? Anyone want to volunteer to create additional videos or podcasts? These can be interviews, tips, tutorials, whatever you think will help people.
We will be announcing two contest for November and a “special” CodeChef project shortly, stay tuned…
CodeChef has come a long way since its beta launch in Jan 09. We hosted our first programming contest in March and soon started looking at other ways we can encourage the developer community. One of our earliest initiatives was CodeChef Campus Chapters aimed at helping students become better programmers. The response from you guys has been awesome and within a few of months we already have 35 active Campus Chapters from all over India.
In an effort to keep you updated with what is happening on all our Campus Chapters we plan to dish out a CodeChef Monthly Campus Newsletter. Here’s what we’ve got for you this month:
Read the entire Newsletter on our Wiki
Toasted Sesame Bagels,
Thank you to everyone who participated in this months contest. It was a close race, with lead changes occurring up until the the last hour. Congratulations to our winners:
1. Harpreet Singh – Rs. 22000
2. Surendra – Rs. 13750
3. Ajay Somani - Rs. 11000
4. Keshav Dhandhania – Rs. 5500
5. Ashutosh Mehra – Rs. 2750
1. Balakrishnan Varadarajan – $440
2. bcloud – $275
3. Josh Metzler – $220
4. ploh – $110
5. Tomasz Czajka – $55
A special mention should be given to Stephen Merriman (2nd), stolis (5th), Anton Lunyov (6th) and RoyaumER (9th) for finishing in the top 10 globally. To all our international participants, we are planning a contest in the next month or two where you will be eligible for prizes.
We’d also like to apologize for changing the time limit for HX a few days before the contest was over. We have really tried to avoid making changes during a running contest but in this case we though that the time limit was too strict and too much emphasis was placed on proper I/O. We will do our best to make sure that these types of issues don’t come up in the future.
If you want to give back to the CodeChef community and help up-and-commers to get better, we encourage you to contribute to a tutorial, links or tips in our wiki (if you do a good job, we’ll also send you some books).
There will not be another contest in October, the next contest is November 1st and will be our (now) standard 10 day format. We will be holding a second contest (most likely a team based ACM-ICPC style competition) in the later part of next month.
Tomorrow, we will be updating the banner, making solutions public, providing contest statistics and test cases.
|Length of Contest||Unique Visitors||Unique Participants||Total Number of Submissions||Percentage of user who have solved at least one problem|
|Country||Total Participants||Average Score per User|
|Rest of World||44||1.995|
Test cases can be downloaded here.
If you have any feedback on the contest, or how we can make the site better, please let us know.
We are constantly thinking about ways how to help people become better programmers. We recently launched the CodeChef Wiki so that people can share tips, resources and tutorials. Unfortunately, it seems people have been a little shy about contributing. To get the ball rolling, we will be giving away books to the top wiki contributors this month.
All you have to do is use the wiki as a place to note all the things you love about programming – resources, tips, tutorials, etc. At the end of October the top three contributors to the tutorials will each receive a set of The Art of Computer Programming (Volume I, II and III) and the other contributors will receive CodeChef T-shirts and laptop stickers.
How can you contribute to the wiki?
Here are the winners of the “CodeChef Facebook Photo Contest” announced in no particular order :
Siddhant Goel : “The Quick Geek”
For being the first one to send in a photograph..only minutes after the contest began..!!
Varun Jewalikar : “The Adventure Geek”
Yes you seem to have left your mark on the ground, underwater and even in the air!
Abhishek Gupta : “The Multiple Geek”
For writing an application in 2 languages, accessing a computer through a cell phone, using 3 operating systems all at once and sending in 2 photographs! [which we really appreciate ]
To all you CodeChef fans out there :
While the Photo contest has ended, we’d really appreciate it if you continue uploading photographs into our fan photo section.
Anything that you might feel suits our Facebook FanPage, be it photographs, polls, links, announcements, discussions, etc. is more than welcome!
This fan page is as much yours as it is ours
The CodeChef Team
We’re very happy to announce that CodeChef Meetup is coming to Delhi this month on 31st October, Saturday.
Just like the last meetup in Mumbai, we hope this one also helps CodeChef programmers come together and learn from the sessions we’ve organized as well as interact with each other and have a good time.
At the meetup we will cover the following two topics:
We’re still in the midst of finalizing a venue for the event but you can still sign up for attending the meetup here. We will let you know as soon as the venue is updated. The venue for the Delhi Meetup is the EDUSAT Hall at Delhi College of Engineering.
Make sure you RSVP!
Videos and photos from the CodeChef Meetup in Mumbai.