Nick Crushes It

Posted by Ned Gulley,

Near the end, everybody has the same idea. It’s obvious, really. Hold back a trick or two and throw it into the mix in the last few minutes. Then cross your fingers and hope that your number comes up. Ideas are cheap, but who can deliver the goods? I’ll tell you who, ladies and gentlemen. Mr. Nicholas Howe of Smith College, that’s who.

I think I can, without hyperbole, say that I have never seen anyone so thoroughly dominate the closing minutes of a contest. Look at this scoring cliff.

the cliff

Amitabh’s Sneaker was on top for a surprisingly long time, given the closing onslaught. I thought maybe that tough old Sneaker might go the distance. It was a timing game: no one was resetting the result of 6877358, but the race was on to shave seconds from the clock. And then along came Nick, with one fist of iron and one fist of steel, smashing the score lower with each blow. When the dust settled, Rapid Weight Loss May Be Harmful was high atop a list of 2713 ranked entries.

Well done Nick. We send our congratulations to you (and your wife).

And well done everyone! Thanks for joining in the fun and making this contest such a pleasant experience. It’s a lot of fun for us at MathWorks to watch the pros go to work. We are amazed by the display of skill.

As always, now is a good time to reflect on how the contest. What did you like, and what would make it run better? How can we get more people to play? How can we get more people to watch? Some of these questions are already being discussed on the newsgroup. Join in the conversation there or leave a comment here.

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