Recently I returned from the Workshop and wanna share my impressions.
The post will be divided into several parts depending on an aspect I am covering in it.
The Workshop is held entirely in MIPT: contestants live in MIPT dorm and have the trainings&lectures at MIPT study buildings. The most distant points in this system are at most five minutes from each other and it was really nice, since one shouldn't care about getting up 30 minutes earlier in order to come to the contest in time.
In CIS the word "dorm" itself is quite scary, because almost everybody has a vivid experience of coming to some competition to some city called N-vodsk and living in cold, stinky dorm with no water or something like this. However, all the contestants were settled in a new dorm, which was pretty nice and comfortable as for a dorm. I had four guys, including me, living in a two-rooms flat with kitchen and bath.
Canteen... Well, as for CIS, it was OK, but it could be better actually.
In general, the conditions were really nice as for 400$(accommodation + canteen + excursions + all educational stuff) for two weeks. Thanks to organizers for making the cost that low.
I participated in team with my friend and colleague MrDindows. As some of you might know, we both work at Looksery and one day our co-founder and COO of the company Monyura suggested us to attend the Workshop. I bet there are very few places in the world where your boss can come up to you and propose participation in ACM ICPC training camp :)
The teams were divided into two divisions with different schedule. The first division teams had nine trainings days with five-hours contest + analysis, while the second division teams shared only four of these nine contests, having lecture + three-hours contest two times a day. I'd like to note, that 60-70% of content at these div2 lectures were quite unknown to me and my teammate. I bet that like a half of div1 teams would also find div2 pretty interesting and useful. Div1 contestants were allowed to attend div2 lectures and contests in case it doesn't intersect with div1 schedule, so we managed to attend three or four such evening contests.
Talking about other teams, it worth to say that all the strongest teams from NEERC except ITMO#1 and NNSU (excuse me if I forgot some team, I am not that good in knowing NEERC teams as I used to be :) ) attended the Workshop and it was very exciting to compete with them during these nine days. The team from Ural FU won around a half of the contests and managed to upsolve all the problems. It sounds even greater if you consider that there was a problem that couldn't be solved by the jury and they didn't have any idea how to solve it. Kudos to the team Dandelion and their coach!
Nine countries were represented at the Workshop, including Denmark and Iceland. I was surprised by such number of international teams and it was nice to make friends with guys from all around the world.
Contests were quite different: from CERC and rng_58 contest to some old OpenCup problemset that one might call a bit ugly. I liked the variety, since there were participants from different ICPC regions, with different semi-final styles. Div1 also had lectures about network flows from Burunduk1, about suffix automaton from adamant and a lecture from Endagorion about number theory. I especially liked the last one, since it wasn't really hard, but was pretty original for us and most of other teams.
Some of you might read my blog about Yandex Internship Interview. And now guess where we had the first excursion? Right, at Yandex! However, the experience was different this time. At first we had an interesting lecture from Yandex senior data scientist Michael about "do we need data scientists?". The lecture was really interesting and far better than I expected it to be. Afterwards we could play board games and have an excursion over Yandex HQ. The office is quite fancy and I guess most people would like it. After the excursion we had lunch at a cafe near the office. It was really delicious if you keep in mind the canteen :) I'd like to thank all the volunteers and the lecturer for having us in their office and coming there on Sunday to entertain us :)
We also had very friendly volunteers at MIPT. They were the students who helped us during the contests, led us to the gym, billiard and played games till the morning with us. Thank you all guys, the Workshop would be ten times less fun without you!
The next day after the last contest everyone could go sightseeing and visit the Space Museum as well as the Polytechnic one.
There were two sponsored contests: one from Botan Investment and another one from AimFund. The guys from the latter even managed to prepare an entire contest(!), while Botan Investment contest was held using CERC problemset. There were cool prizes on both contests and I believe top teams liked it :)
We also had something called "University Cup Beta". Teams were grouped in regions, having at least five teams in each, and after each contest they calculated total problems count and penalty for the region and then determined the winner in each pair. Our team belonged to the region "Ukraine" and we were lucky to have really strong legioner kb.. We also were lucky not to have any really weak teams in our region. Togather with lucky order of the opponents in the University cup all these allowed us to win the overall competition somehow :D
The results can be found here.
If you hadn't been to the Workshop, then I strongly recommend you to do so. Personally, I will definitely come again if I have enough time. In case you also attended it, feel free to comment\add something.
Thank organizers for making the Workshop and thank you for reading the post :)
UPD: Oh God, how do I add photos properly?