USA Computing Olympiad Team to IOI 1994
Brian Dean(S), James Ayers(B), Queen Charlotte, Mehul Patel(G) Hubert Chen(B)


The 2rd annual USA Computing Olympiad (USACO) is ready for the 1994 season.

The primary goal of the USACO is to select a team of four students to represent the United States in the annual International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI). In 1994, the 6th IOI will be held at the Royal Institute of Technology near Stockholm, Sweden, from July 3 to July 10.

There are three rounds in the selection of the USA Team: Qualifying Round, Competition Round, and Final Round.

Qualifying Round (February 14-18, 1994)

The qualifying round is the first level in the USACO. The purpose of this first round is to let students know the level of programming ability that is expected for success in later rounds of the USACO and IOI. In this open event, individual students are invited to work on a set of four problems, without any time restraints, and present their solutions to a local contest coordinator during the week of February 14-18.

This year the qualifying round problems were selected from the set of problems used at the 1993 IOI in Argentina. Thus students will learn the type of problems they are likely to face, under a time limitation, in the later rounds.

All programs are to be written by individual students working alone. This round will help students see if they are at the level of programming ability necessary to succeed in the later rounds, which will be tightly controlled. Thus, only in this round will the judging be left up to the local coordinator. Each student must select an adult at their school to serve as their local coordinator. This person will be responsible for running the programs against the test files to see if the output is correct. This must be done during the week of February 14- 18, 1994.

Each student who can solve two or more of the qualifying round problems is ready to advance to the Competition Round.

Competition Round (March 12 or 14, 1994)

The competition round is a controlled, five-hour event administered by the local coordinator on Saturday, March 12. Monday, March 14 is reserved for those who cannot program on Saturday. The students' work is returned to the University of Wisconsin-Parkside and graded by a team of judges from the USACO. The programs must be submitted on an IBM compatible or Macintosh disk and must use one of the official languages allowed by IOI (Pascal, C/C++, QuickBasic, or Logo). There is a $20 registration fee for each student who enters the competition round. This fee can be waived in cases of financial hardship. The top sixteen competitors will advance to the final round.

Final Round & Training Camp (June 26 - July 2, 1994)

The final round is an intensive week-long program which will result in the selection of four team member to represent the United States at the next International Olympiad in Informatics. It will be held on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in Kenosha, Wisconsin. It will include three days of training with practice problems and two days of competition following the rules of the IOI. All expenses, including airfare, will be paid for the 16 students selected for the final round. This year, as soon at the USA Team of four students is selected , they will depart for the 6th IOI to be held in Stockholm, Sweden at the Royal Institute of Technology.

The 6th IOI (July 3 - 10, 1994)

The International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI) was created in 1989 at a meeting of UNESCO held in Paris. The first IOI, held in Bulgaria in May of 1989, was patterned after the successful international Olympiads in Mathematics and the Natural Sciences. The second IOI was held in the USSR and the third in Greece. In 1992, over 170 students from 50 countries attended the Fourth International Olympiad in Informatics held in Bonn, Germany. Nate Bronson and Shawn Smith won gold medals for the US Team in its first venture into IOI. In 1993, the United States team of Hal Burch, Mehul Patel, Yonah Schmeidler, and Eric Pabst, all won medals at the 5th IOI in Mendoza, Argentina October 16-25, 1993. (See story in this brochure.) The 6th IOI will be held from July 3-10, 1994, in Sweden.

USACO Sponsors and Supporters

The first USACO, held in 1993 at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, was sponsored by the Center for Excellence (CEE) and USENIX.