The MVP Summit 2005 is over, and with the exception of Transportationgate, it was a great event - even though I had attended PDC05, and worked with Whidbey for years now. I don't primarily come for the news, but talking to other MVPs as well as product group members.
On the community side of things, Alex and I put the finishing touches on the localization feature of CodeFairway.NET, which now includes the ability to play a tournament in a specific timezone.
You don't know what CodeFairway.NET means? Let me introduce .NET Golf to you:
Now, that is intentionally a graphic, to show that sites made by programmers for programmers need not be ugly but can be quite appealing. Here goes the text for easier reading:
"What is .NET Golf?" How did the union of a programming technology and a lawn sport come about? Well, the idea is simple and fascinating: in 'classical golf' the winner is the player using the least number of strokes to hole out. We transferred this concept to programming: whoever needs the fewest number of characters to solve a given programming problem wins the tournament. Speed and elegance of the solution are not criteria.
Each tournament extends over a given time span, after the end of the tournament we hold 'post mortems', i.e. the participants explain their solutions (so that there may be a great wailing and gnashing of teeth behooving the creative abuse of the technology).
.NET Golf is the successor of ASP Golf which was quite popular among German language developers for a long time (the actual ancestor of code golf is Perl Golf). As many golfers switched over to .NET, we decided to migrate this waste of time ^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hmost excellent use of technology to .NET so that the envelope of programming could continually be pushed further.
Sounds interesting, doesn't it? That's what we thought and that's why we ran a tournament at the MVP summit (all English, you can browse it to learn more) to introduce other MVPs to .NET Golf - and whet their appetite to be the host for .NET Golf in their community. If you didn't get a chance to talk to me at the summit, here's what we (German community members, so that there are no misunderstandings) offer: we host the site for you on CodeFairway.NET, and we provide you with the automated test system we have created so that there is little to no overhead for you. Your job: translate the site into your community's native language, and come up with challenges (we can help get you started). My MSN account to get in touch with me: christoph dot wille at alphasierrapapa dot com (also my email alias if you prefer emailing me upfront).
Funny enough at the MVP summit, for the very first time in history of our tournaments, the VB.NET golfers won the tournament hands down. That might have changed if only Karsten and the others would have paid more attention to the sessions
The leaderboard for the first three looked like this (and yes, the Show link does show the source of the submission - check it out):
It took them quite a while to get on the green, but as with every other tournament I heard something like this: "I only wanted to play till 11:30PM, but at 1:30AM I finally coaxed me to go to bed". Addictive. Even for a simple challenge such as the one played at the MVP Summit:
How can you tell whether three lines of a given length make up a triangle? Some cases are obivious - equilateral triangles, isosceles triangles and triangles governed by the Pythagorean theorem. General triangles are a different matter though. You are now challenged to decide whether a given set of three integers represents the sides of a triangle and indicate this by passing back true, otherwise passing back false to the test application. Please note that "flat" triangles (triangles which have the shorter sides add up to the length of the longer side) do not count as triangles.
The class name for this challenge is Tee, the method name Off. The values for the three sides are passed as a string (never empty, always three values contained) to the Off method, the values are separated by a single space (eg "300 400 5000" which obviously is not a triangle). The values are non-negative integers.
So if you are interested in being the host for your community, get in touch with me. .NET Golf is very popular: currently, Microsoft Austria is using our German codefairway to play a MSDN Connection tournament. Mario just announced it (English).