Greg Lee: "The International Olympiad in Informatics in Baku will be fantastic"
The 31st International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI) is taking place in Baku. More than 80 countries present their teams at the event. The president of the International Olympiad in Informatics, Professor Greg Lee, spoke with Vestnik Kavkaza about the organization of the IOI-2019, expectations from it and its goals.
- How do you assess the IOI-2019 organization in Baku?
- In my opinion, Azerbaijan organized everything at a fantastic level. And this is not only my opinion. Everyone with whom I spoke thinks so. From the very first day, as soon as we arrived at the airport, we were met already at the passport control, organizers were assisting those who needed a visa to get it at the airport. Then the participants were taken to the Olympic village. They were settled very quickly. Then the leaders were taken to a luxury hotel. The conditions in the Olympic village are also very good. Therefore, I believe that, given everything that we have seen so far, this will be a fantastic Olympiad in Informatics.
- What are your expectations?
- We look forward to a good, honest competition. And I am sure that it will be so. But, in addition to the competitions, the most important thing is that the participants who come here can make friends with each other. They do not often have an opportunity to meet people from around the world. The Olympics for them is a great opportunity to meet people with the same mindset, who like algorithms and solving problems. This is a good opportunity to make friends.
- What is the purpose of the International Olympiad in Informatics?
- I believe that the main goal of the Olympiad is to support informatics. That's why the competitions are held - to identify the best of the best in each country. Every country sends four participants to the Olympiad. Before that, they hold national competitions. Thus, the International Olympiad in Informatics supports the development of computer science around the world. Some countries began to participate in our Olympiad without much success. But over the years, more and more students are becoming interested in informatics, the quality of knowledge improves, and these countries begin to win medals. And I believe that this is an important event for all countries to stimulate interest in informatics among their students and peoples as a whole.
- Does participation in the International Olympiad in Informatics help the future career?
- As far as I know, many former participants of the International Olympiad in Informatics, no matter whether they received a medal or not, work in large companies around the world - Google, Facebook, Microsoft and so on. Some of them are returning to us as the leaders to help in the organization of our Olympiads. I think our participants are very smart. They are the future of modern technology. But our competitions are for schoolchildren, and large companies pay more attention to competitions at the level of higher education to select new employees. Because students, unlike schoolchildren, will be able to go to work immediately after graduation. But our participants are very smart, sometimes even smarter than some students. Therefore, I urge large companies to help with the future organization of the International Olympiad in Informatics.