Richard is 24 years old. In his freetime he loves the mountains and so came his interest in climbing and bouldering. He climbs outdoors and loves the freedom of a natural surrounding without technology. But there is one thing that is anchored in him. He likes challenges. No matter if it’s a rock wall or a coding competition. He wants to get to the top. Starting to coding at the early age of only 12, lines of code are nothing new to him anymore and therefore we are proud to have him in the Catalysts team in Linz as a software developer since 2011. Read how he managed to win the EFSTA contest.
The EFSTA (European Fiscal Standards Association) organised a coding contest exclusively for students from the University of Applied Sciences in Hagenberg / Austria in the period of 30th April 2015 – 31st May 2015. Participants had one month to get to the solution, which did not make the contest easier…
First of all, congratulations for your win at the EFSTA coding contest! Tell us more about the setup of the competition and why this competition is so special.
Firstly one has to state that the contest is less stress driven compared to other coding contests as you have a long period of time to think about the best solution and how you are going to handle the problem. In general the challenge was split in two levels. The first one being fairly easy, the second being the real “problem”. You were given a whole bunch of consecutive transactions e.g. from a supermarket. The goal was to reduce the total amount of these transactions without making them invalid.
What was the hardest part to reach the goal? Did you have a special setup of computers / servers? Were you in touch with other participants during the contest period?
I had the first level done within a single afternoon. The main problem was that you had to make a huge amount of calculations to find a solution. Especially for the second level, where one computer would not have been powerful enough to solve it in a reasonable time. In the end I linked 8 computers and used their processors and video-cards to finish the level. Thanks to Catalysts who supported me with one Cuda PC for several nights! Contact to other participants was not allowed during the contest.
I ended up to be the fastest to complete level 1 and the only one to complete level 2.
Congratulations to Richard and keep it up!
More info on: www.efsta.org