• Knowing what it’s like to win

    by  • July 7, 2013 • Nicholas Adermann, reporters, stories • 1 Comment

    IMG_4405United States’ competitor Johnny Ho is the returning champion of the International Olympiad for Informatics, after achieving the highest score in the 2012 competition.

    Having won gold medals in the previous two Olympiads, Johnny aims to complete the trifecta this year by claiming the IOI’s top honour.

    Last year, Johnny beat six-time gold medal winner Gennady Korotketvich from Belarus, a feat that had not been done in the four years beforehand.

    “I’d never really beaten him before, but I think it might have just been a bit of luck, but it’s still cool,” Johnny said.

    When it comes to this competition, Johnny is unsure about his chances.

    “This year, I’m kind of a bit nervous; even Scott [another member of the USA team] beat me in the United States qualifying,” he said.

    When asked what result Johnny would be happy with, he said, “I think a top five finish this year would be good.”

    In the process of winning last year’s competition, Johnny recorded a perfect score, something that had only been achieved several times in the 25-year history of the competition.

    Johnny, who started programming when he was 12, said that the key to winning was “getting familiar with all the algorithmic methods that are out there”.

    “Last year, I spent about 10 hours a week [practising], but this year, it’s dropped down to about five,” he said.

    Since winning IOI in 2012, Johnny feels that he has lost some of the motivation he had previously had.

    “I’m no longer quite as excited about spending my time on algorithmic programming competitions, though I still encourage others to participate.”

    However, the future looks bright for Johnny after this year’s competition, having secured a place at Harvard University to continue his studies of information technology and mathematics.

    He has also found informatic-based work at information sharing website Quora, which allows him to apply his skills in the workforce.






    Nicholas is a 20 Year Old Journalism/Political science student currently in his third year of study. He is also the Assistant Editor of the UQ student magazine Semper Floreat. He enjoys all mediums of journalism, and he is excited to report about informatics considering that these competitors are the future minds of the world.

    One Response to Knowing what it’s like to win

    1. don piele
      July 8, 2013 at 8:00 am

      Nice story. Love your news coverage of the IOI. Wonderful way you guys are covering the event.

      Don Piele
      Founding Director USA Computing Olympiad

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