When persistence and grit won over experience

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December is a busy month for every programmer around the world, for it is the ACM ICPC season. The regionals take place across the globe and the crème de la crème of the programming world battle it out to secure a coveted place at the ACM ICPC World Finals. It was no different this year as well. As we stepped into December, some of the regionals across the world had just concluded and we were just weeks away from the ACM ICPC Indian regionals.

With everyone looking for means to put the finishing touches to their ACM ICPC preparations, our December Challenge 2016, was their final big chance to test the waters, before they move towards the final frontier. While, for everyone else, it was the final chance to spend some time with their beloved computers and keyboards, before they step into the festive season and treat themselves with the sugary goodness that every festive season brings with it. It was an interesting setup. So, let’s see how the December Challenge 2016 fared.

The start to the contest was akin to pretty much like any other long contest we have had all through the year. It took saurabhrathi12 only 6 minutes to get the first AC of the contest on ANKTRAIN; it was followed by a couple of more ACs on the same problem. The second problem that saw an AC was SEAINCR, soon after ANKTRAIN. It remained like this for quite some time. The number of participation kept going up in the first half of the contest, while it stagnated in the latter half. And that is when the positions on the rank tables get decided. And it was an interesting looking rank table this time around. And we will tell you why.

When in the final days of the contest, the rank tables are generally occupied by the favorites. It was no different this time, the likes of sumeet_varma, rajat1603, mugurelionut, notimesea and many others still shining brightly on the rank tables. However, what was striking this time was the number of consistent performers, occupying the top slots. It’s one of those moments when you see your hard-work finally paying off. And the feeling certainly cannot be described in words. To see the likes of gvaibhav21, jtnydv25, ccz181078, come through the ranks and stamp their authority on the top slots of the rank table.

It was not easy to reach there and it certainly was not going to easy to stay there, especially when the seasoned campaigners have you in their sight. Every submission made now will decide their fate and position into the contest. But it seems that after years of wondering through the rank tables, they had mastered the art of defending their position on the rank table. So, as the fabulists would have it, it was a contest when persistence and grit won over experience. And now, we take a quick tour of the rank tables to meet all the winners from December Challenge 2016.

We start with the girls *Big round of applause*:

Now, on to the ROW top 10:

Now, the Indian top 20:

Now, let us move towards the schools to meet the young geniuses:

We start with the ROW top 5 from schools:

Now, the Indian top 5 from schools:

Now, for the special achievers, the top three scorers of the challenge problem, outside the winners:

First, the ROW top 3:

And finally, the Indian top 3:

Kudos to everyone on their brilliant performance in the contest!

With that, there are two more stories to tell from the month of December, which we will be updating pretty soon. We hope you had a wonderful 2016 and will have an even better 2017. And on that note, we would like to draw curtains on this delayed tale of December Challenge 2016. We hope you enjoyed the tale as much as you enjoyed the contest. If you have any feedback or words to say about the contest, the post, or CodeChef in general, you can always write to us at: feedback@codechef.com

Till next time, take care.

– Rudreshwar
Team CodeChef

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