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Overview of the Contest

   The ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest is a programming world championship for college students, organized and conducted yearly by the ACM. Started in 1970 as a local contest in Texas and having grown exponentially in the number of participating universities each year, the contest now is spanning the globe. Meanwhile it has been referred to as the Superbowl of Computer Programming or even as the Olympic Games of Computer Science.

   The ACM programming contest provides college students with an opportunity to demonstrate and sharpen their problem solving and computing skills. Apart from the fun of competing (and hopefully winning), the contest also provides an excellent opportunity for listening to well-known speakers and making international contacts in computing science.

   The contest is a two-tiered competition among teams of students representing institutions of higher education. The winning teams of the regional contests (held from October to mid-November each year) will go forward to the contest world finals which are held in the following Spring.

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Event Outline

   This Southwestern European Regional Programming Contest 2002 is one of the six european regional programming contests to select the teams that will represent our region, France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, western Austria, part of Germany (Baden-Wurttemberg, Bayern, Berlin, Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt and Thuringen) and Switzerland at the finals. Winners will join about 60 teams selected from regional contests all over the world at the ACM Programming Contest World Finals in the spring of 2002

   The Southwestern European Regional Programming Contest is organized by the ACM Southwestern European Regional Contest Organization Committee patronage of the Faculties of Engineering and of Science at the University of Porto, Portugal. This contest will last 2 days.

   The event is on the 16-17th of November. The first day is reserved for presentations, practice session and social events, and the second day is for the contest itself. The full scheduling of the event will be published later.

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Contest Rules Summary

   The contest rules closely resemble the official rules used at the finals. Some aspects of this year's offical rules are still being discussed (and will be published as soon as we can), but they will be similar to SWERC'2001 rules. For guidance, the most important aspects thisyear's rules are briefly outlined below (detailed rules are also available):

Team Eligibility

   A team consists of at most three contestants. Each contestant must be a student enrolled in a degree program at the sponsoring institution with at least half-time load. At least two contestants must be undergraduate students. No contestant may have completed two years of post-baccalaureate studies or hold a graduate degree. Students who have competed in two contest finals are not eligible. A member of the faculty of the institution sponsoring the team must certify the eligibility of all contestants. Each team designates a team coach (preferably not a contestant) who will be the team representative and point of contact before (e-mail, fax and material mail) and during (direct conversation) the contest.

   Each university may send up to three teams. A university is not allowed to participate in more than one regional contest. Since the call for participation may reach more than one person at your university, please ask around to make sure we do not receive several (uncoordinated) applications from different persons from the same university.

Contest format

   The contest lasts five hours. Each team has to solve a set of six to nine problems on a single computer in either C, Pascal, C++ or Java. To get an idea of the kind of problems, have a look at the problem archives in our links section, which contain a large number of problems from past contests.

   Contestants may bring reference materials such as books and manuals; but neither machine-readable versions nor their own computers or pocket calculators are allowed. Solutions are judged by running them for some secret test cases. The contest judges are the solely responsible for determining the correctness of the submitted solutions; their decision is final. Teams are ranked according to the most problems solved. Teams who solve the same number of problems are ranked by least total time.

   Each participant will receive a certificate. Furthermore, IBM will be donating software to all participants.

Contest Regions

   Teams are expected to participate at the site assigned to their country. Exceptionally (with written consent of both contest directors) teams from Europe are allowed to participate in a contest different from their assigned location. However, if an university can send more than one team, all of them have to go to the same location. Requests to change the location should be addressed to both contest directors and submitted in written form, explaining the reason of the change.

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Contest Site

   The contest will be held at the new buildings of the Engineering Faculty of University of Porto, that provide all the necessary conditions for the sucess of the contest.

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    We got a very good deal from the same hotels as last year (the two hotels are side by side). However, a room can only be guaranted if it is reserved at least one month in advance. After the 15th of October the rooms will be reserved on a daily basis, but the reservation will not be definitive until the hotel confirms it.

    You can make your reservation online, using our form, and you can check the status of reservations already made.

    The prices given are for one night and include accommodation, breakfast and all taxes.

Tuela Porto Hotel (3*):
(previously named Tuela)
single: 40.00 Euros
double: 45.00 Euros
triple: 58.50 Euros

Hotel Tuela    Hotel Tuela

Fénix Porto Hotel (4*):
(previously named Tuela-Torre)
single: 55.00 Euros
double: 60.00 Euros
triple: 78.00 Euros

Fénix Porto Hotel (Tuela-Torre)    Fénix Porto Hotel (Tuela-Torre)

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Participation Fees

   Participation fees are 25 euros per person, if the corresponding team has registered until the 1st of November 2002. Fees go up to 30 euros, per person, for late registration.

There are two options for paying the fees:

  • Pay cash, in euros, when confirming your registration at the contest site.
  • Pay by bank transfer, in euros. Our account details are as follows:

    Bank:             Caixa Geral de Depositos
    Account Num.:     003521540001368993030
    Reference string: APPIA-SWERC2002

    IMPORTANT: if you choose to pay by bank transfer we require that you send us a copy of the bank transfer slip, otherwise it won't be considered. Our fax number is: +351 226003654 and you should address it to the contest director.

    Bank address in case you need it:

    Caixa Geral de Depositos,
    Avenida Dr. Aresta Branco, 13,
    2825 Costa da Caparica,

Receipts: if you require a receipt for the registration fees, please send us an email request with details regarding the entity to which the receipt should be addressed. If you do this up to one week in advance of the contest date, we will have it ready for you on the 16th, otherwise we will send it by mail afterwards.

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   We have room for about 50 teams. Team places will be assigned on a first-come first-served basis with the additional constraint that third teams are only accepted after all requests for second teams have been satisfied. We will try to accept all first and second teams' requests, but we can't guarantee it in this moment. Therefore, it is very important that coaches register their teams as soon as possible.

   If you want to participate, you must register by filling in the application form at the ACM world-wide registration system. Please note that registration is conducted from Mar 15, 2002 to Nov 01, 2002. Advance Registration ends Oct 25, 2002. Please look into this site to find out about other deadlines...

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Further Information / How to contact us

   Please do not hesitate to contact us in case you should need more information. We strongly recommend you to consult our web site regularly to get the latest news and the most up-to-date information.

Prof. Fernando Silva,
ACM SWERC Director,
Universidade do Porto,
Faculdade de Ciências,
Dep. de Ciência de Computadores,
Rua do Campo Alegre, 823
4150-180 Porto

   We look forward to welcome you in our beautiful city and make this event enjoyable to you.

      Yours sincerely,

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Steering Committee and Staff

      The Southwestern Europe Regional Programming Contest Steering Committee:

Regional Contest Director: Fernando Silva
Local Activities Coordinators: Lígia Ribeiro, Augusto Sousa
Regional Chief Judges: Gabriel David, Ricardo Lopes
Judging System Manager: José Paulo Leal

   many other colleagues assist the Committee in a number of tasks, namely:

   Susana Amorim (secretariat), Pedro Ribeiro (Web+Posters), Hugo Ribeiro (Sys. Administrator), Pedro Silva (Sys. Administrator), João Carvalho (Sys. Administrator), Luís Lopes (Judge), Ricardo Rocha (Judge), Ana Paula Tomás (Judge), Luís Filipe Antunes (Judge), Álvaro Figueira (Local Activities) and Michel Ferreira (Local activities).

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