This year marked the ninth annual Wolfram High School Summer Camp, and it was a truly amazing experience. Forty-four students joined us remotely from around the world—from almost on the doorstep of Wolfram’s headquarters in Illinois to as far-flung as Kazakhstan, Germany, Russia, South Korea and India. They dedicated two weeks to learning the Wolfram Language, creating remarkably high-level independent projects and developing strong computational thinking skills. Our students had the opportunity to learn from subject experts from Wolfram Research, their mentors and teaching assistants (TAs) and, of course, our CEO Stephen Wolfram, who met with each student to discuss their projects.
The 18th annual Wolfram Summer School has just thrown its graduation party in High Fidelity, a virtual world augmented with spatial audio. Students and faculty sang together during karaoke with a DJ and jukebox, chatted away mixing techspeak and humor, said farewells and had a ball celebrating the completion of the program. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we chose to make our summer programs more accessible to the students and faculty from all corners of the world—this year from 25 countries and all populated continents.
Remote work. Distance learning. Virtual events. These terms are becoming more commonplace as quarantines and stay-at-home orders continue and folks practice social distancing. While brainstorming how best to contribute to our customers around the world during these unusual times, we’ve generated a ton of data resources, analytics, free access to technology and much more.
However, these resources were still missing a deeper level of collaboration and interaction—the simple power of people coming together to connect, work and learn. With that in mind, here are some more group-oriented offerings to help keep you connected and in touch with one another, even in the new landscape of an almost entirely virtual world.
Happy Hour of Code! There’s no better reason to start learning or continue honing your programming skills than the Hour of Code, an annual celebration of computer science during Computer Science Education Week. While we like to think that every hour is a great hour to code, we look forward to the Hour of Code event as an opportunity to come together and share some of our best Wolfram Language resources for students. Since its 2013 launch, the Hour of Code has been an immense success, introducing valuable programming skills to millions of students. So with this year’s Hour already underway, let’s take a look at the ways you can get started!
This year's Wolfram Technology Conference was host to the eighth annual One-Liner Competition, an event where attendees show us the most astounding things they can accomplish with 128 or fewer characters of Wolfram Language code. Submissions included games, card tricks and yoga exercises, all implemented with less than one tweet's worth of the Wolfram Language.
Two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of returning as a commentator for the fourth annual Livecoding Championship, a special event held during the 2019 Wolfram Technology Conference. We had such an incredible turnout this year, with 27 total participants and 14 earning at least one point! Conference attendees and Wolfram staff competed for the title of Livecoding Champion, with seven questions (plus one tiebreaker!) challenging their speed, agility and knowledge of the Wolfram Language. It was a high-spirited battle for first place, and while I had prepared “answer key” solutions in advance, I always look forward to the creativity and cleverness that competitors demonstrate in their wide range of approaches to each question.
By popular request, in addition to revisiting the questions, I’ll walk you through how competitors reached their solutions and earned their points, as a kind of “study guide” for next year’s aspiring champions. So hold on to your keyboards—we’re going in!
It’s been a whirlwind week of talks, training, workshops, networking and special events, and we’ve just closed another successful Wolfram Technology Conference! The week offered a multitude of opportunities for attendees and internal staff alike to connect, learn and enjoy unique experiences one can only get in Champaign, Illinois, every October. I’m happy to provide some highlights from the week and invite you to save the date to join us next year: October 6–9, 2020.
We began this week with pre-conference training on topics from machine learning and neural networks to application building and “Computational X,” offering headquarters tours and an opening reception before the “real” conference even began. Monday’s opening keynote by CEO Stephen Wolfram covered a ton of ground, from a Version 12 recap to a roadmap of things to come. True to tradition, Stephen uncovered bugs in pre-release versions of our software, livecoded examples and gave the audience so much to look forward to.
Live from the Wolfram Technology Conference 2019:
Opening Keynote, Developer Interviews and the Livecoding Championship
Today marks the start of our annual Wolfram Technology Conference. We’re looking forward to hearing about the latest innovations in computation from our Wolfram technology users! The conference is a great way to network with other users and find out what’s new at Wolfram and in our community. If you aren’t attending this year, you can still connect with the conference through our broadcast events.