I always was dreaming that one day competitive programming will become a real sport, not just activity for a small group of participants. Why? Because I don't really like working and my tries to do some science were totally unsuccessful. It would be cool to live just by doing what you like. Very childish, I know.
But this blog is not about if competitive programming is important or are there any ways to make it interesting to watch to wider audience. I am just trying to understand, is it currently moving toward real sport or away from it? And I get some mixed signals about that:
Big onsites (like GCJ or TCO) seem to cut the number of participants and the amount of prizes.
Some onsite-finals are turning to online-finals. For example, several years ago we had Russian Code Cup onsite in Russia, currently RCC Finals is online.
Some big companies are turning away from sport programming (IBM is stopping sponsorship of ACM ICPC).
Some new finals were created during last years. For example, VK Cup in Russia, SnackDown in India or Code Festival in Japan (for students).
Some small firms are holding rounds and even created their own little onsite finals.
Sports programming (not in the financial part) seems to thrive. For instance, there are new platforms for training that were created just in the last year: like atcoder (for international participants) or csacademy.
So, what future will you predict for a competitive programming? Will it become a real sport? Or will it forever be just for fun and for students to get to the interview in a big company?