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Sharif beats Harvard

March 10, 2001, Vancouver, Canada (IBM Canada) -- Students from Russia's St. Petersburg University took top honors in the Association for Computing's ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest - a five-hour battle of logic, programming skills and mental endurance sponsored by IBM.

The contestants on the winning team will walk away with an IBM ThinkPad computers, software, scholarships, and bragging rights to the "world's smartest trophy."

Canadian teams from the University of Waterloo, University of Alberta, and the University of Toronto, finished among the elite in the 62-team field.

The University of Waterloo finished the competition in fourth place and won a Gold medal, while The University of Alberta and University of Toronto each won Bronze medals and tied for fourteenth place overall.

Teams were awarded medals based on the number of problems they solved during the five hour competition.

This year's ACM World Finals competition, held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, marked the fourth of IBM's five-year sole sponsorship. Rounding out this year's top ten teams in descending order are:

1. St. Petersburg State University - Russia

2. Virginia Tech - United States

3. St. Petersburg Institute of Fine Mechanics and Optics - United States

4. University of Waterloo -- Canada

5. Albert Einstein University - Germany

6. Warsaw University -- Poland

7. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - United States

8. Seoul National University -- Korea

9. Sharif University of Technology -- Iran

10. Harvard University - United States

More than 13,000 of the world's top computer science/engineering students and faculty from 70 countries around the world competed from September through December in preliminary and regional contests to secure a spot at the World Finals.

Since IBM began sponsoring the contest, student participation in the contest has grown from 1,090 teams in the 1996-97 season to more than 2,770 teams competing this year, an increase of more than 150 percent.

The contest has also expanded competition into new countries, including Hong Kong, Singapore and Seoul, Korea

Editor's Note: For more information on the ACM Programming Contest, visit the contest Web sites at or

IBM Contact:

Angela Carmichael
Public Relations, Software,
IBM Canada Ltd.
Phone: (905) 316-6498

Jennifer Atkinson
Continental Technologies
416-964-6444 ext.428


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