On January 24th, Google hosted their first ever Ship Wars Programming Competition at Google Waterloo, allowing many Kitchener-Waterloo software engineers to participate. The competition is the brainchild of Google’s Aaron Kemp and Garret Kelley.
Nearly 40 participants took place in the competition, and were given only three hours to code a space ship in any language they choose. The ships were then uploaded to a Google server, and pitted against each other in a virtual environment.
Though the programmers were able to code the movements and weapons of their ships, these systems behaved differently depending on the environment into which they were entered - with the only clues coming from matches played against test ships.
After a tour of the Google Waterloo offices, and thousands of simulated battles, the winners won a Motorola Xoom, a Galaxy Tab, and a Google messenger bag. Due to the success of the event, the competition will expand next year, to include the Pittsburgh and Cambridge offices.