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Top coder

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Slides used during a case facilitation in one of my class.

Slides used during a case facilitation in one of my class.

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  • http://news.cnet.com/CMGI-to-buy-Tallan-for-920-million/2100-12_3-264732.html

Top coder Top coder Presentation Transcript

  • TopCoder
    Developing software through crowdsourcing
  • How TopCoder came about?
    Jack Hughes
    Tallan Inc. (Business Data Services)
    Sold for $920M
  • Lessons learnt from Tallan?
    Not happy with the operations of Tallan
    Expensive and time consuming recruitment process
    Evolving technologies results in high employee turnover rate
    More can be done to save clients time and money
    Crowdsourcing was the solution!
  • TopCoder v1.0Consulting Business Model
    Host competitions with monetary rewards from sponsors
    Build community strength
    Gain popularity
    Winner gets a job with the sponsor
    HR firm
  • TopCoder v2.0Competition Based Model
    Crowd sourcing Software Development
    Tasks of Software Development Process
  • TopCoder v2.1Competition Based Model
    Dissatisfied with $20 mln in revenue
    Platform Managers costs too high
    Tasks of Software Development Process
  • Did it work?
    Decrease in contest from 2008 to 2009
    Switched from hourly based consultation to monthly fee
  • Types of Competition
    Algorithm Competition
    Attract new members
    Retain existing members
    Software Development Competition
    Provide clients with specific solutions
    Expand TopCoder’s catalog
  • Algorithm Competitions
    Timed competitions
    Available in Java, C#, C++ & VB.Net
    Single Round Match consists:
    Coding Phase
    Challenging Phase
    System Testing Phase
  • Algorithm Competitions
    Coding Phase
    Lasts 75 mins
    Contestants presented with the same 3 questions
    Points awarded for successfully compiled solutions
    Total time elapsed
    Challenging Phase
    Lasts 15 mins
    Challenge the functionality of other competitors’ code
    Successful challenge:
    Defendant – loss of original submission points
    Challenger – 50 point reward
    Unsuccessful challenge:
    Challenger – reduction of 25 points
  • Algorithm Competitions
    System Testing Phase
    Applied to all submitted code (not successfully challenged)
    Flawed code submission will lose all points
    Automated tester applies a set of inputs
    if submission’s output does not match expected output, submission is considered flawed
    All successful challenges will be added to the set of inputs for the System Testing Phase
  • Example of an Algorithm Competition
  • Example of Algorithm Competition
    011100011
    Encrypt by adding to each digit to the sum of the adjacent digits
    [0+1], [0+1+1], [1+1+1] etc.
    123210122
  • How does it attract & retain the TopCoder Community
    Think about your lab practices/tests
    Challenging
    Prove your worth
    Self improvement
  • Community
    Active Pool
    17.5%
    95%
    82.5%
    5%
  • Motivating the Community
    Money is the most attractive thing
    TopCoder ratings
  • How to motivate the latent pool?
    Monetary Award
    $50 for successful compilation of code by latent pool (for 5 rounds)
    1.5 times prize money if they are the winner
    Prospective Jobs