When the Contest will take place in 2019?

The third Bioinformatics Contest will take place in February, 2019. The Contest will be organized in two online rounds on the Stepik platform:

  1. Qualification Round — one week from February 2 (11:59 AM UTC+0) to February 10 (11:59 AM UTC+0).
  2. Final Round — 24 hours on February 23 (starting 11:59 AM UTC+0).

If you are interested, please subscribe to the Contest news so you can be assured not to miss out the competition!
How can I join the Contest?

The Contest will be held entirely online on Stepik (free registration required). Please follow the link to sign up and get acquainted with sample problems.

We will send you a reminder closer to the Qualification Round start day via Stepik. Please make sure to set notifications on Stepik on in order not to miss the Contest announcements.
What skills are required from the participants?

Participants should know how to code in one of the programming languages, especially how to read and write from standard input/output streams and files. The knowledge of algorithms and data structures, machine learning and basics of molecular biology will be helpful. Any programming language can be used.
Will there be prizes?

Yes, top five participants will get prizes! In addition, top 20 will get honorary Bioinformatics Contest T-shirts.
What is Qualification Round?

The Qualification Round is the first stage of the Contest and is required to go further. It lasts 7 days. This round is more educational than competitive: it will help you get familiar with Stepik and provided testing system. Participants will also be able to assess the level of required skills.

The Qualification Round is open for all.
When Qualification and Final rounds will be available?

The Qualification Round will last one week starting from February 2 (11:59 a.m. UTC). You can solve problems any time during this week. It will be closed on February 10 (11:59 a.m. UTC).

The Final Round will last 24 hours. You will have access to it if you successfully finished Qualifications Round and got the required number of points or more. It will be open on February 23 11:59 a.m. UTC. The minimum number of points to advance to the finals will be announced closer to the Contest start date.
How the Final Round will be organized?

Everybody, who will get at least the required number of points in the Qualification Round, will automatically advance to the Final Round. The day before the Final Round they will receive notification that it is going to start soon. Like in Qualification, you will be given several problems to solve. Please don't forget to read the rules carefully!

You will be able to solve problems in 24 hours. The winner will be the one who gets the highest points in the final round. Please note, that Qualification Round score will not contribute towards the final result.

You will be able follow the competition scoreboard in real time. Winners will be announced during the week after the Contest.
What type of problems I should expect?

There will be two types of problems: with exact and approximate answers.

For problems with approximate answers the test inputs will be downloadable files. Your task will be to find good solutions for these tests and upload them to the testing system. Here, almost anything can be used to solve the problems, including existing bioinformatics tools, libraries and frameworks, but excluding help of others.

In the case of interactive problem the interaction protocol through the text files will be specified in the problem statement.
If I miss the dates of the competition can I still see and solve problems?

Yes, you will be able and solve problems both from Qualification and Final Rounds. You will not get points for them.
Are there any examples of the problems that can be found in the contest?

Yes, you can check out examples from previous Contests at Stepik (free registration required):
How the problems will be graded?

Each problem has its own number of points that you could get for solving it. In the problems with exact answers you will get points only if your answer satisfies all the requirements of the problem and passes all the tests.

In the problems with approximate answers you will get the points calculated by a formula given in the statement of the problem. In this case, for each test the best submission attempt is used for the final score.
How solutions will be submitted?

You will be given a test that you download and then you should upload your output for that test in a plain text format. In order to solve such problem you could use everything you want except for the help of other people. The output file should not exceed 5 MB.

In the case of interactive problem the interaction protocol through the text files will be specified in the problem statement.
What could be the additional limits for the problems?

You can not submit your solution very often. As a rule, 10 seconds should pass between two consecutive submissions. These constraints will be described in each problem.
What programming languages can I use to solve the problem?

Any programming language can be used. This year there will be no problems where you should submit a solution code. For each problem you will be given a test input and you should provide only the output.
How the scoreboard is calculated?

Your points at the end of the round are calculated as a sum of your points for each problem in the round. The Qualification and Final Round are scored independently. The prizes will be awarded based only on the results of the Final Round.
I have an idea of a problem that I think may be a good fit for the future Contest. Can I submit it to the Contest team somehow?

Yes, sure! We welcome contributions to the problems creation. Please fill in this form and we will discuss it further in more detail. Authors of the problems selected for the Contest will get prizes from the organizers.
Where can I learn more about previous contests?

Bioinformatics Contest has taken place since January 2017. You can check out the results published online:
How can I contact the organizers?

You can reach us at contest@bioinf.me.