Programing team makes world finals

Dec 4th, 2008 | By | Category: Campus News, December 4, 2008

Three computer science and engineering students from UNL won out over 200 other teams of student computer programmers in the North Central North America Regional competition of the IBM-sponsored Association for Computing Machinery International Collegiate Programming Contest. The regional was conducted Nov. 15 at 15 sites, including UNL.

The three-student team of juniors in the Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management includes Tim Echtenkamp of Cairo (computer engineering major), Tyler Lemburg of Dannebrog (math) and Steve Trout of Batavia, Ill. (computer science and math). Echtenkamp and Lemburg are both graduates of Centura High School. The three students will advance to the World Finals April 18-22 in Stockholm, Sweden. The regional runner-up teams that may also advance to Stockholm were from Iowa State University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The coach of the UNL teams and director of the UNL site, Charles Riedesel, has had teams advance from the regional level to the World Finals in seven of the past 11 years.

One hundred teams will compete for awards, prizes, scholarships, and bragging rights to the “world’s smartest trophy” at the World Finals, hosted by KTH-Royal Institute of Technology. Thousands of teams competed worldwide to earn advancement to the World Finals by winning the regional competition or wild cards.

“All four of UNL’s teams scored in the top 25 in our region,” Riedesel said.

The contest pits teams of three students against eight or more complex, real-world problems, with a grueling 5-hour deadline. Huddled around a single computer, competitors race against the clock in a battle of logic, strategy and mental endurance.

The team that solves the most problems in the fewest attempts in the shortest time wins. Learn more at or

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