Omar Christidis, Founder and CEO of ArabNet, introduced the Developer Championship Tournament by displaying a small movie on the big screen, which took the viewers on the contestants’ journey as they battled and won in their country’s national tournaments ,leading them to the regional championship. These coders are some of the best in the region, and they have earned the right to compete in the championship.
After the introduction and showing up on stage for a big applause, they went on to the coding battlefield where they had set up their laptops, and prepared for the challenge that lied ahead. I could see the excitement and enthusiasm on their faces; they were ready, confident, and full of energy waiting to explode into coding extravaganza.
On the UAE team were Kumail Tinwala, Andrew Crosio, Bilal Khartabil, and Wojciech Michal Gaca.
On the Jordanian team were Anas Salman, Mohammad Almawali, Saeed Ismaeel, and Waleed Tuffaha.
And on the Lebanese team were Andre Abi Haidar, Abdo Achkar, Ahmad Mousawi, and George Zakhour.
The championship, very much like the national competitions, was split into three rounds:
The first round focused on the coders’ proficiency, and it entailed creating an ecommerce app with a shopping cart and a checkout system, and should allow users to buy multiple items. After an hour, the appointed judges gave points for each individual coder depending on completeness of features, the UX and UI, and creativity.
The second round focused heavily on creativity, presenting developers with three buckets consisting of services using APIs and a theme. So the contestants could for example use Youtube’s API, Twitter’s API, and a Sports theme to build an app that allows users to view the top 10 most tweeted videos in both the sport and time-frame of their choice. An hour and a half is certainly not enough time to have a fully working app, but a testable prototype was needed. The judges gave points according to complexity and sophistication of the concept, as well as the creativity and value of the app and its features.
The third round was by far the toughest of the bunch. The contestants had to fit 10 boxes with different weights, but weighing 75kg in total; into 3 crates which can carry a maximum of 25kg each. The first problem was backing the boxes into the crates, while the second was writing a simple web app that calculates the best combination of boxes to fit into the crates, showing clearly the minimal number of crates needed for each order. The faster they finished, the more points they won.
After many hours of dramatic and nerve wracking coding, the results were in, and this year’s winner was by far the Lebanese team with 214 points, followed by the UAE team with 127 points, and the Jordanian team with 109 points… there was an obvious wide gap between the challengers this year, even though none of the judges were Lebanese. Hopefully this will encourage a tougher contest for the next year around.
As for the individual winners: last year’s winner was Morgante Pell from the UAE, but this year it goes to:
First place: Andre Abi Haidar from Lebanon with 79 points!
Second place: Ahmad Moussawi from Lebanon with 56 points!
Third Place: George Zakhour from Lebanon with 48 points!
It’s been a wild day for all the contestants, who were approached by many entrepreneurs and investors looking to hire them, and learned a lot about which areas they were good at, and which needed improvement. Aside from the obvious opportunities of showcasing their talents to the wide array of technology professionals at the Digital summit, the winners received paychecks worth $10,000 in cash prizes.
If you’re interested in joining the Developer Tournament in your country, and hopefully later in the regional Championship, then make sure to keep an eye on our Twitter and Facebook accounts, as well as our Developer Tournament website.