University of Cape Town, South Africa
Janos Batik is 23 years old and studies mathematics and economics at the University of Cape Town.
Janos heard about the competition from his boss and says the competition “helped me refine my expressions and re-look at functionality of some of the more abstract primitives that I have largely ignored.” He enjoyed that the competition allows participants to break “down complex issues into their simplest parts. I like the APL language because of the simplicity of the primitives when brought together, allows complex structures to evolve with ease.”
Universiteit Utrecht, Netherlands
Marinus is 25 years old and studies computing science at Universiteit Utrecht.
Marinus says he received a student license for Dyalog APL and was sent an invitation to compete. He says the competition’s problems were very interesting and “solving them in APL is a whole different game from solving them in a more traditional language.” APL language “is very expressive!” Marinus recommends that everyone “to go ahead and participate, and not be intimidated. The competition isn't nearly as tough as you would expect, and a total outsider can just waltz in and win first prize with a bit of luck.”
“I got my first look at APL sometime in 1973 from John Scholes. He dragged me away from some good old Fortran coding to show me something really cool. Made complete sense immediately. My thinking has been changed ever since. That first introduction was with Xerox APL on a Sigma 7 at WS Atkins in Epsom. Since then, I've used most of the APLs around - and J and K. But, I still feel most comfortable with all the funny glyphs. Forget ASCII portability; give me ⍉ and ⍋ any day.
I spent a good number of years making a living from APL, either at IP Sharp or as a consultant. More recently, I've practised as a lawyer but, now at age 66, I'm retired. But still very much the APL enthusiast."
University of Scranton, United States
Joshua David is 19 years old and studies computer science at the University of Scranton.
Joshua says a neighbor introduced him to the APL language and describes APL as “a very powerful language. What takes multiple lines of code in many other popular languages, can be accomplished with a single line of APL. The primitive functions are very powerful and varied. It's one thing to read and learn the APL language reference and other manuals. But when you actually have to write a program on your own, then you are forced to either go learn more about the language or apply what you already know. In the same way that math professors make you exercise math problems, problem solving is essential to understanding concepts. This is especially true in programming. When working with the problems, I had to study more about what APL has to offer and look for tools to reach solutions. Fortunately, APL has a tremendous toolkit.”
Finance: Rafael Rodrigues, Brazil
General computing: Imaculate Mosha, South Africa
Bioinformatics: Louis de Forcrand, Switzerland