ICFP Programming Contest
The ICFP Programming Contest is an international programming competition held annually around June or July since 1998, with results announced at the International Conference on Functional Programming.
Teams may be of any size and any programming language(s) may be used. There is also no entry fee. Participants have 72 hours to complete and submit their entry over the Internet. There is often also a 24-hour lightning division.
The winners reserve "bragging rights" to claim that their language is "the programming tool of choice for discriminating hackers". As such, one of the competition's goals is to showcase the capabilities of the contestants' favorite programming languages and tools. Previous first prize winners have used Haskell, OCaml, C++, Cilk, Java, F#, and Rust.
|1998||Université de Montréal and Massachusetts Institute of Technology||Write a program that plays pousse, an odd variant of tic-tac-toe. Contestant programs were entered into a tournament to determine the first- and second-place program.|
|1999||Harvard University||Size-optimize case statements (the contest task spoke about text-based adventure games, but in fact the task was to size-optimize the description of such a game).|
|2000||Cornell University||Implement a ray tracer using a Postscript-like syntax.|
|2001||INRIA Rocquencourt||Size-optimize an HTML-like markup language by removing unnecessary whitespace and tags, and so on.|
|2002||OGI School of Science and Engineering||Implement robots playing a Sokoban-like game one against each other.|
|2003||Chalmers University||Implement robots driving a car as fast as possible through different racing tracks.|
|2004||University of Pennsylvania||Design an ant colony that will bring the most food particles back to its anthill, while fending off ants of another species. The contest entry would output a state-machine description of the ant: in principle, entries could have been written by hand. Later the task was adapted into Ant Wars, a strategy and programming game where each participant is a species of ant. The participants then, in a language called Antomata, program a finite state machine to function as the brain of each ant. The ant brain then controls the ant to find and collect food to bring to the home ant hill, to fend off attackers or make trails of pheromones.|
|2005||PLT group||Implement "bots" for a "Cops & Robbers" game: contestants have to write the control program that guides a Robber-Bot through a quiet urban neighborhood on a mission to rob every bank without getting caught, and the control program for a Cop-Bot dedicated to stopping it.|
|2006||Carnegie Mellon University||Implement a virtual machine that runs an operating system (called UMIX) provided by the judges, and crack it using new programming languages with unconventional syntax and semantics, such as 2D and a version of BASIC using Roman numerals. Many puzzles were tiny versions or parodies of previous contests.|
|2007||Utrecht University||Implement a 2-stage virtual machine that executes a DNA-like string to produce an image. Then, given an input string for this machine, find a prefix that when added to this string yields an image as close as possible to the given target image.|
|2008||Portland State University and the University of Chicago||Provide a Mars rover control system that will guide it to a home base while avoiding obstacles and enemies.|
|2009||University of Kansas||Control a satellite to move between specified orbits and rendezvous with other satellites.|
|2010||Leipzig University of Applied Science, Germany||International Car and Fuel Production.|
|2011||Tohoku University, Japan||Program a computer with 256 "slots" to outlast its opponent in terms of slots remaining at the end of the match. Submissions include executables that are entered into a two-phase tournament.|
|2012||University of St Andrews, Scotland||Program an AI for a Boulder Dash-like game.|
|2013||Microsoft Research||Guess the implementation of a blackbox function implemented in a simple functional language through querying a web service.|
|2014||University of Oxford and Well-Typed LLP||Write AI programs for a pacman like game, in SECD machine instruction for pacman and 8-bit machine assembly instructions for four ghosts.|
|2015||Galois||Write an AI for Tetris-like game on a hexagon grid field that embeds secret phrases in the move sequence.|
|2016||University of Electro-Communications||Write an AI to solve abstract origami.|
|2017||University of Edinburgh||Write an AI for a game where players in turn claim route parts on the map and the one with the best coverage wins. There are also three extensions to the main game mode, any number of which can be enabled on a map.|
|2018||Rochester Institute of Technology||Generate nanobot traces to construct, destruct, and reconstruct target 3D objects while minimizing energy used.|
|2019||Yale-NUS College and National University of Singapore||Worker-Wrappers against Bit Rot.|
|2020||SKB Kontur||Build virtual machine by the alien specification, run alien provided game-server on that VM, explore the game (2D space battle on the planet orbit with Chebyshev distance, with accelerate, shoot, split and detonate commands), reverse engineer game-protocol and create bot to play this game.|
|2021||Alex Lang and Jasper Van der Jeugt||Manipulate a figure similar to a mechanical linkage to fit through a hole in the wall.|
Prizes have a modest cash value, primarily aimed at helping the winners to attend the conference, where the prizes are awarded and the judges make the following declarations:
- First prize
- [Language 1] is the programming tool of choice for discriminating hackers.
- Second prize
- [Language 2] is a fine programming tool for many applications.
- Third prize
- [Language 3] is also not too shabby.
- Winner of the lightning division
- [Language L] is very suitable for rapid prototyping.
- Judges' prize
- [Team X] are an extremely cool bunch of hackers.
Where a winning entry involves several languages, the winners are asked to nominate one or two. The languages named in the judges' declarations have been:
|Year||First Prize||Second Prize||Third Prize||Lightning|
|2004||Haskell||Haskell and C++||Java and C++|
|2010||C++, Haskell, Python||SageMath|
|2011||F#||Shell and C++|
|2013||Java, C#, C++, PHP, Ruby and Haskell||C++ and Python||C#, C++, bash, awk, sed and Excel||C++|
|2019||Rust||C++||C++ and Haskell|
|2020||Python||C++ (first winner), Rust (second winner)||Haskell|
|2021||C++, Rust||Rust||Rust, TypeScript and Go||Rust, TypeScript and Go|
References and notes
- "ICFP Programming Contest Scoreboard". Retrieved 23 September 2012.
- "Antomata - The Language of Ant Wars". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- "The Contest Begins". ICFP Programming Contest 2019. 2019-06-21. Retrieved 2020-07-15.
- Final results of the ICFP'99 Programming Contest
- The contests in 1999 and 2002 had a lightning division, but without a separate prize. The winners of that division were awarded Judges' prizes.
- The Third Annual ICFP Programming Contest
- The Fourth ICFP Programming Contest
- The Seventh Antual ICFP Programming Contest
- The Eighth Annual ICFP Programming Contest
- 2D was a toy language invented for the 2006 contest. The winning team used C++, Haskell, Python, Bash, and 2D.
- The 2007 contest had a lightning division, but since there was no clear leader after 24 hours the judges decided not to choose a winner.
- ICFP 2008 Programming Contest Results
- http://www.vimeo.com/6613815 - accessed September 23, 2009
- ICFP 2010 Programming Contest (video)
- ICFP Programming Contest 2011
- ICFP Programming Contest 2012
- ICFP Programming Contest 2013
- ICFP Programming Contest 2014
- ICFP Programming Contest 2015
- ICFP Programming Contest 2016
- ICFP Programming Contest 2017
- ICFP Programming Contest 2018
- "Final Results". ICFP Programming Contest 2019. 2019-08-20. Retrieved 2020-07-15.
- "ICFP Programming Contest Awards and Reports". 2020-08-26. Archived from the original on 2021-12-21. Retrieved 2021-05-29.
- ICFP Programming Contest 2021