Feeds

Google I/O snafu greenlights crap code, angers devs

Will 100 ugly step programmers go to the ball?

The essential guide to IT transformation

There are red faces across Mountain View today after angry developers pointed out a flaw in the Chocolate Factory's Code Jam competition for tickets to the Google I/O conference in June.

Tickets for the event sold out in 20 minutes after they went on sale last month, and prices on eBay hit $4,500 before the auctions were taken down.

Google opened up 100 tickets to developers who successfully wrote solutions in a Code Jam competition, but the checking mechanism for entries turned out to be borked.

"The validator – i.e. the thing that checks your program has created the correct output was broken - and people who submitted incorrect entries had them verified as correct and correct entries (like mine - not bitter at all) were marked as incorrect," emailed Reg reader Richard of Barcode Beasties/TonePush.

The Google+ page covering the competition soon began to fill up with comments from developers, some of whom had stayed up all night trying to win tickets to the show. Many pointed out that code they knew was correct was getting shot down by Google, while others reported flawed code getting approved.

El Reg got in contact with Google to find out what went wrong and an explanation from the Code Jam team has now appeared on the competition web site. It explained that four of the team's coders made the same mistake with the first question and this wasn't noticed until after the competition entries started to come in.

"We would like to apologize for the confusion this has caused," the team said. "We will send an email to all participants shortly, announcing our plan to resolve this issue in the least unfair manner possible. We take a lot of precautions to prevent mistakes like this, but we have messed up this time."

Quite what can be done at this stage remains to be seen. Google faces the prospect of having 100 undeserving coders getting into the show, based on the current results, and there are a lot of peeved developers as a result. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Time to move away from Windows 7 ... whoa, whoa, who said anything about Windows 8?
Start migrating now to avoid another XPocalypse – Gartner
You'll find Yoda at the back of every IT conference
The piss always taking is he. Bastard the.
HANA has SAP cuddling up to 'smaller partners'
Wanted: algorithm wranglers, not systems giants
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.