Mozy Contest Impressions (was: Re: Mozy Contest Answers)

Zach Wily zach at
Mon Nov 6 11:10:25 MST 2006

Looking back, I doubt that allowing people to use whatever libraries
they wanted would have actually given anyone an unfair advantage. I'm
sure that next time we do this, we'll revisit that requirement.

That said, there were 3 coders in the finals that did all the early
round problems in C++, so we know the problems weren't completely
unreasonable, even for compiled-lang folk. In fact, of the 8
finalists, only 2 used scripting languages, and neither was perl :).
The rest were split pretty evenly between C++ and Java.

And from what I've heard, you're far from a "poor coder". :)

(programmer at bds)

On 11/4/06, Dave Smith <dave at> wrote:
> Just wanted to share my impressions about the Mozy coding contest. I
> found that the majority of the questions had to do with the ability to
> parse text and manipulate strings. Only one question had to do with
> anything else, and it was thrown out. I can only conclude that BDS
> thinks people who can write programs to parse text in 10 minutes or less
> are worth a $10,000 award. I personally think the breadth of the
> questions was lacking. Maybe phase 2 had a wider breadth of problems --
> I didn't advance, so I don't know.
> I personally felt limited as my strongest language (C++) lacks good text
> processing in its standard library. Since I was not allowed to use my
> favorite libraries (Qt has an awesome string class that would have made
> the problems *much* easier), I was unable to complete several of the
> problems in the alotted time.I did complete one of the problems in 2
> minutes using Perl, while most of the others left me gasping for air
> after 10 minutes of C/C++. Oh well. :)
> Curious how others did, and also wondering if the $10k was awarded today.
> Best of luck to BDS in their hunt for talent. I think we're all
> struggling to find good developers right now.
> --Dave
> P.S. The reason I didn't advance, as many of you know, is that I am a
> poor coder. Bummer for me, eh?
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