MATLAB Programming Contest Blog
November 4th, 2011
Early Bird Closes: So close, Sebastian!
Look at the list of submissions and you’ll see that Sebastian Ullmann’s entry cheaper ? ranked the highest as of 21:00. But our listing only shows minutes, not seconds. The question is 21:00 and how many seconds? If he had managed to get it in by 21:00:00, he would now be wearing our Early Bird Sport Jacket emblazoned with the golden crest that says “I Won!” But close inspection revealed that his entry came in at 21:00:37 UTC, which means he narrowly lost to none other than… wait a second… I have the name around here somewhere… Nick Howe!
I was going to say “Oh Sebastian, you waited a little too long to submit your entry.” But, once again, close inspection reveals that his entry was actually based on Nick’s winning entry, Cheap Reverse, which wasn’t even scored until 20:58:50 UTC. So, far from being slow, I have to commend Sebastian for his nimble typing. He modified and resubmitted his runner-up (here’s the diff) in about 90 seconds. Nick’s entry was based on Pori 13 by Abhisek Ukil, which was based on -1 by Alex P. which was based on … well, you get the idea. A lot of people have contributed ideas by now.
Nick left us a nice comment in his winner:
This seems like just a tweak (and it is), but I only realized how effective it might be after spending two hours trying something much more complicated that in the end didn’t work nearly so well!
Funny how often that turns out to be the case. And that reminds me: be sure to look at the comments from time to time. There’s a lot of good stuff in there, and some of it’s very funny. You can leave comments on any entry at any time. You can ask questions, give congratulations, or propose new ideas. It makes the game more fun.