For those who are hearing about us for the first time - PAG is a group of enthusiastic and young programmers spanning across multiple departments, branches and years in IIT Roorkee operating under the aegis of Software Development Section with the aim of improving the algorithmic, mathematical and programatically problem solving capability of students of IIT Roorkee.
There is already SDSLabs and IMG in IIT Roorkee, then what is the need of another programming focused student body on campus?
While IMG is mainly concerned with maintaining web applications for the administration, and SDSlabs is innovating and building applications for the web, mobile, network, and so on, there is a strong need of improving the algorithmic and competitive programming capability in the campus. How many people knew about ACM ICPC or TopCoder or CodeChef before PAG came around the corner? We cater to this very need. We are not just another programming group. The sole objective of this group is to develop a platform where passionate people can learn about algorithms/logic irrespective of their branch.
#What We Do:#
The name of the group says it all. Our activities revolve around Programming and Algorithms.
We are people who love to code : A thrill that takes liberties with Logic. Competitive Coding is one of the things that keeps motivated (Damn! Did he solve it faster than me ?? There must be another, faster method!!!)
We organize coding events, we participate in coding events and we win coding events!!! Oh yesss we do all the three things!!!
We also maintain an active Facebook group where people can ask us any kind of programming/algorithm related doubt. We believe that Programming is not a zero-sum game. Teaching something to a fellow programmer doesn’t take it away from us. We are happy to share what we can, because we are in it for the love of programming.
This blog is another step in this direction where in we will be regularly posting about different algorithms and problems on various online judges. We are also coming up with the concept of Problem Of The Week where in we will post a problem every week on our Facebook group and allow people to discuss it and work on it for a week. One week later, before posting the next week’s problem, we will post an editorial about it on our blog. This way we can reach out to more people within and outside IITR.
#Events by Us:#
Every year we organize a variety of coding events which includes :
Insomnia: Every year during Cognizance, the exclusive Annual Technical Festival of IIT Roorkee, the second largest of its kind in Asia; we organize a fiercely contested online coding contest Insomnia. An overnight contest, which boasts of a huge competition from the world over, including some of the best known names in the field of sport programming, consists problems of ACM style, with varying difficulties covering various topics of algorithmic programming like graph-theory, dynamic programming, sorting, game theory, computational geometry, flows - almost everything. And for the stats, the best team in India could solve only 6 out of the total 14 problems (Insomnia - 2013).
And the team works days and nights, for weeks to rigorously set and test the problems and solutions. We put our best efforts to generate an original and clean problem set, which our participants enjoy to solve. Take a look at last year’s problem set and editorial.
Here are some glimpses of the event night - those insomniac nights ensuring smooth run:
Codematics: For those who love solving mathematical problems and not just algorithms our team organizes Codematics. This event features problems just like Project Euler - Challenging mathematical/computer programming problems that require more than just maths to solve. Along with maths one has to use his/her programming skills to win. And this too gets participation from all over the world.
Bits and Bytes: This event is more of a quiz and involves mathematical and logical puzzles and questions based on implementation details in C/C++/Java
#On Campus Activities:#
In fact, Insomnia and Codematics are not the only coding contests that PAG organizes. Along with SDSLabs, we are actively involved in organizing several coding contests on intranet at IITR. Known as CodeBlitz, these contests are anticipated by the students at Roorkee who reward us with their active participation. It is one of the several attempts by PAG to improve the coding culture in R-land, and it makes us extremely happy to see our little efforts bear fruit.
We also hold lectures on algorithms for both our members and IITR junta (whose frequency will increase in the coming time). Several teams as well as individuals from PAG participate regularly in programming competitions on almost all popular online judges.
Only few years back IITR was nowhere in the arena of ACM ICPC. There was a severe lack of competitive coding culture in the campus. Few seniors who saw the big picture around, and with the ambition of improving the culture in campus started this group.
The founders of the group had a dream - To produce an ACM world finalist team from IIT Roorkee. This dream soon became reality.
Two years back we had a team in top 10, one year back we had a team in top 5 and this year for the first time we have the team “The 65th Bit” from IITR that not only qualified for World Finals, ACM ICPC but also scored best rank among all Indian teams and overall 60th rank, which is held in Russia this year. Only Bombay and Indore were the other IITs among the five Indian teams that qualified (IIIT-Hyderabad and Chennai Mathematical Institute being the other two).
#How we manage all this :#
We feel proud to host Insomnia as well as other coding events on an in-house developed open-source online judge CodeRunner(developed by SDSLabs), which is similar to Sphere Online Judge. Currently it supports grading submissions in C, C++, Java, Python, PHP and Perl with plans for adding more languages in future.
CodeVillage is the web application developed and maintained by SDSLabs for hosting the coding events. It is used in all internal coding events as well as in Insomnia 2013.
Every year, PAG recruits some of the best and promising first yearites who enter IIT Roorkee. But this does not mean we lose touch with the graduating students! They stay in touch and guide our group as it takes on new endeavors, providing essential support at every step. To make sure we do not lose out on good talent, the recruitment is a two-step process: a written test followed by a personal interview.
#What else we do :
After working a lot, we enjoy a lot!!! Ohh ya we have our share of fun too. We go on trips and walks, we play football on holidays and we don’t miss out of any reason to have a chapo!!! “Awesome” is not sufficient to describe these. Take some glimpses here:
Thats all for now. We will be back soon with a new blog discussing some algorithm or some maths trick or some coding problem or sharing our own experience with programming.