News about Dyalog

Aug 21, 2015

2015 APL Programming Contest Winners

The 7th Annual global programming contest winners were announced on 10 August 2015. Below you can find out a bit more about them, and hear about how they got interested – and participated – in the contest.


The Grand Prize winner is Arianna Locatelli who receives a cash prize of $2,500 USD and an invitation to present her winning work at Dyalog '15 in Sicily.

Arianna Locatelli is 17 years old and is currently a fourth year student in Liceo Classico S. M. Legnani, in Saronno, a little town near Milan.

Arianna says "My school focuses on the teaching of humanistic subjects, especially Latin and ancient Greek. Despite the fact that informatics is not taught in my institute, my maths teacher introduced me to the APL language during a year-long course and eventually proposed that I should take part into the competition. I gladly accepted because I was really interested in programming, and after hard work I now have the huge satisfaction to have won the grand prize."

You can meet Arianna at Dyalog '15 in Sicily, where she will present her winning entry and talk about her experience with the APL programming contest.


The Second Prize winner is Joshua (Josh) David who receives a cash prize of $1,250 USD.

Josh is 18 years old and graduated from High School earlier this year. He will be attending the University of Scranton (U.S.A.) this autumn for his first year as a Computer Science Major.

According to Josh "I was introduced to APL and this competition by Paul Mansour, President of the Carlisle Group. I have been studying and working with APL for a few years now as an intern at the Carlisle Group. The APL programming language really fascinates me. Due to the variety of primitive functions and operators to choose from, there are so many different methods one can use to complete a task. Sometimes I develop my own way of doing something, and later stumble upon a primitive and realize that I was essentially rewriting that primitive. The more I get to do hands-on programming, the more I can master the primitives and work towards cleaner, more concise code. This competition really helped me discover new APL tricks. There's so much to learn with APL and it is really amazing to see how Dyalog continues to add functionality to such a 'mature' language."


The Third Prize winner is Dragana Babić who receives a cash prize of $750 USD.

Dragana is a 24-year-old student at the University of Novi Sad, Serbia. She is in her last year of studies for a master's degree in applied mathematics at the Faculty of Science.

Dragana comments "My primary interests are financial mathematics and mathematical modelling. Problem-solving is definitely the thing I adore and when I read about APL and the contest on last year, I immediately got interested and started to explore this unusual programming language. I was especially attracted by the fact that each function is applied to full expression on its right side. When I saw the weird rule for me as a mathematician that 5x3+2 is 25 I knew I definitely had to participate in this crazy challenge. Last year I was not so successful because of my inexperience, but I hoped this year it would be much better and fortunately it was.

"I recommend all who love problem-solving to participate because the persistence and dedication can lead to good results. I really enjoyed participating in the contest."


The winning Professional Entrant is Roberto Szabó. Roberto is an electronic engineer with several decades of experience. He has now returned to using APL as part of his doctorate in diffusion of knowledge and cognition.


Dyalog would also like to highlight and give an Honourable Mention to:

  • Alexander Kuhnle (Cambridge University, U.K.)

  • Luyang Du (State University of New York at Binghamton, U.S.A.)

both of whom both submitted very good and interesting solutions.

Thank You and Congratulations

This is the seventh consecutive year that Dyalog Ltd – together with sponsors APL Italiana, Fiserv and SimCorp – has run the International APL Problem Solving Competition. We would like to thank the sponsors for making it possible to continue to run this annual programming challenge and for hosting the 2015 contest.

Congratulations to all the winners. Keep an eye out for the APL programming contest for 2016!