IOI'95 - Newsletter 1

[ IOI Home page ] Newsletter 1

Edited by the IOI'95 Host Team

IOI'95 - Secretariat 
c/o Marian Nijhuis
National Institute for Curriculum Development (SLO)
PO Box 2041
7500 AC Enschede
The Netherlands

Phone  int + 31 53 840840
Fax    int + 31 53 307692

Hello World!

We take advantage of this newsletter to wish you all a very good 1995. It's amazing how quickly time flies: we are almost halfway between the IOI'94 and the IOI'95. We had a wonderful olympiad in Sweden. The organization in Haninge was both relaxed and efficient. It was a good competition and we all felt proud when the gold, silver and bronze medallists were standing on the stairs in the beautiful Stockholm City Hall. Thank you, Sweden!

We are honoured to have been asked to host the IOI'95 in The Netherlands and we invite you most warmly to attend. We will try our very best to make the IOI'95 a memorable occasion.

The IOI'95 organization is picking up speed, we have settled a number of important questions. We plan to have computers, we plan to have beds, we plan to have an opening and a closing ceremony. This newsletter tells you more. We hope it transmits our excitement and enthusiasm. We are looking forward to welcome you on June 26, 1995.

The Netherlands are waiting for you!

Ries Kock and Ria van Ouwerkerk

The Preliminary IOI'95 Program

Monday, June 26
Arrival, Opening Ceremony
Tuesday, June 27
Visit to Amsterdam
Wednesday, June 28
1st Competition day
Thursday, June 29
Visit to the Efteling Amusement Park (Will be a visit to Rotterdam)
Friday, June 30
2nd Competition day
Saturday, July 1
Science Fair
Sunday, July 2
Science Fair, Closing Ceremony
Monday, July 3

Call for National Flags

Don't forget to bring your National Flag
(dimensions approximately 1.50 meter x 1.00 meter)
to the IOI Secretariat.
It will be kept there for future IOIs.

The IOI'95 Locations

Ard Hartsuijker and Franka van Neerven

The competition will be held on the campus of Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE). The campus is located in the center of Eindhoven: a five-minute walk will take you to the railway station and five more minutes take you to the main shopping areas. You will be lodged in bungalows at De Kempervennen, a holiday park in Westerhoven near Valkenswaard and Eindhoven. The bungalows are well-equipped. Each of them has a lovely terrace, so you can visit your neighbours. In the park you will find: two large lakes, a swimming pool in a subtropical paradise, many sports facilities, e.g. tennis, badminton and squash courts, shops and restaurants and facilities to change money and cash traveller's cheques. Of course there are bicycles for hire!

Introducing the Dutch IOI'95 Host Team

Ries Kock             Manager
Ria van Ouwerkerk     Manager
Franka van Neerven    Deputy Manager
Martin Rem            IOI Chair
Tom Verhoeff          Scientific Committee Chair
Arjan Keijzer         Public Relations
Ard Hartsuijker       Foreign Affairs
Ron Helwig            Technical Affairs
Paul Jansen           Creative Solutions
Marian Nijhuis        IOI Secretary
Geert Jan Bittink     Sponsoring
Ries Kock (Manager of IOI'95) is chairman of The Dutch Olympiad in Informatics. He is also senior curriculum adviser at the National Institute for Curriculum Development on informatics education and the use of information technology in education. Ria van Ouwerkerk and Ries are responsible for the IOI'95 organization. Ries is a typical constructor of mega-projects like building a mansion.

Ria van Ouwerkerk (Manager of IOI'95) teaches computing science at Eindhoven University of Technology. She is dean of first-year students and responsible for the contacts of her department with the highschools. Ries Kock and Ria share the general management. Her special responsibilities are the general organization in Eindhoven, the opening and closing ceremonies and the Science Fair.

Franka van Neerven (Deputy Manager) is the PR-officer of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computing Science of Eindhoven University of Technology. As such and as deputy manager she is responsible for the PR and the general organization of IOI'95 in Eindhoven. Franka also is a sculptor.

Martin Rem (General Assembly Chair) obtained a Ph.D. degree in computer science at Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) in 1976. Thereafter he spent one and a half year as assistant professor at California Institute of Technology in Passenda. Since then he has held a professorship in computer science and mathematics at the TUE. He combines this with a consultancy for Philips Research. His research interests include parallel computing and VLSI design.

Tom Verhoeff (Scientific Committee Chair) has solved informatics problems for two thirds of his life. He earned a Ph.D. in computing science at Eindhoven University of Technology and now works there as assistant professor in the area of parallelism and algorithmics. He has been involved in strengthening the ACM, both internationally and for students. Puzzles are Tom's best friends.

Arjan Keijzer (Public Relations) works as a consultant on public relations and marketing both for the National Institute for Curriculum Development and the IOI'95. He developed an overall plan for the sponsorship of IOI'95.

Ard Hartsuijker (Foreign Affairs) is senior curriculum adviser at the National Institute for Curriculum Development on informatics education and on integration aspects and applications of information technology in other school subjects. For the IOI'95 he will edit the newsletters and arrange the invitation and registration of the national teams. Ard collects cactuses.

Ron Helwig (Technical Affairs) graduated in 1988 in mathematics at Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE). Since 1989 he is a supporting staff member at the Computing Centre and the Faculty of Mathematics and Computing Science of the TUE, where he coordinates a number of automation activities.

Paul Jansen (Creative Solutions) is senior curriculum adviser at the National Institute for Curriculum Development after being a teacher in math & IT for 20 years. He is vice-president of the Dutch Teacher Union for IT in Education (I&I). Heavily leaning on his team of specialists he will try to solve nearly all your problems (but of course not the competition problems) during IOI'95. Paul plays the saxophone.

Marian Nijhuis (IOI'95 Secretary) has been supporting curriculum projects in the National Institute for Curriculum Development (SLO) as a secretary for many years. The IOI'95 is one of the projects she supports. Marian loves music and laughing, so if she does not smile you did something wrong.

IOI'95 - An Organization in Full Swing!

Arjan Keijzer

The organization of the International Olympiad in Informatics 1995 is in full swing. The Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) and the National Institute for Curriculum Development (SLO) are doing their utmost in making the IOI'95 an unforgettable event. The IOI'95 will take place from June 26 up to July 3, 1995, in the city of Eindhoven. Participants, students and their team leaders, of about sixty countries will take part in the contest.

Several partners

The TUE and the SLO found several partners in organizing this big event, such as the Ministery of Education, the City of Eindhoven, the Province of Noord Brabant, and other Dutch Universities. The electronics multinational Philips is the main sponsor of IOI'95. The computer company Tulip will deliver the required 375 computers. Television and radio will pay attention to the IOI week.

The Science Fair

During IOI'95 there will be a Science Fair. All students in secondary education in The Netherlands will receive an invitation to attend this spectacular event. A part of the Science Fair will take place in the stadium of PSV, the famous Eindhoven soccer-club. At this moment the IOI organization is busy finding support for this and other events. We hope that the IOI program which we are preparing will make your visit to The Netherlands unforgettable for you and your students. You'll hear about the results of our efforts in the coming months.

Our Invitation

The organizers of IOI'95 invite you most cordially to come to The Netherlands and bring four contestants if the team consists of boys only or girls only. But you may bring five contestants if your team is mixed. Our Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Dutch Universities generously sponsor the invitation for the fifth contestant. A national delegation will therefore consist of four or five students and two teamleaders, or of two observers. As usual, the travel costs to and from The Netherlands are to be payed by the national delegations. All the other costs will be covered by the Dutch organization. We presume that this invitation in no way violates the olympic regulations in your country and that this is a possibility to encourage girls in your country to participate in the IOI, and we hope that this will enlarge the participation of girls at IOIs.


Every contestant must be under the age of 20 at June 26, 1995.

Extra persons

If your team consists of more than 2 teamleaders or observers, or if you are accompanied by guests you have to pay US$ 1,000 for each extra person.

Programming Languages

The following three programming languages will be available during IOI'95:


We kindly ask you to send in the "country-registration-form" which is in this newsletter. For the registration of names and travel data we will send you registration forms later.

Timetable of important registration dates

country-registration-form (enclosed in this newsletter)
Entry of each participating or observing country: the estimated number of students, teamleaders, observers and guests (including male/female).
Final return date: March 1, 1995

Names-Form (will be sent)
Entry of the names of students, teamleaders, observers and guests.
Final return date: May 1, 1995

Travel-Form (will be sent)
Entry of dates and times of arrival and departure, flight-numbers.
Final return date: June 1, 1995

Suggestion for accommodation on earlier arrival in or later departure from The Netherlands

Ard Hartsuijker

If you want to arrive earlier or leave later you have to make your own arrangement for accommodation in The Netherlands. There are many possibilities. Every local Tourist Information Office "VVV" can make reservations for hotels or bungalows anywhere in The Netherlands. Of course you can also make reservations with the aid of your local travel organization. Hotel accommodation is often more expensive than a bungalow. However bungalows are often to be reserved for weeks, midweeks or weekends. Furthermore bungalows are not always close to public transport. The IOI'95 week is very close to the summer holidays. This means that hotels and bungalows may be full. Book early!

For your help we mention two tourist offices and three holiday parks (the holiday park where you will be lodged during the IOI'95, close to Eindhoven and two other parks closer to the major cities in the western part of The Netherlands).

Amsterdam Tourist Information "VVV"
De Ruijterkade 5
PO Box 3901
1001 AS  Amsterdam
Phone  int + 31 06 34034066
Fax    int + 31 20 6252869
Eindhoven Tourist Information "VVV"
Stationsplein 17
PO Box 7
5600 AA  Eindhoven
The Netherlands
Phone  int + 31 40 449231
Fax    int + 31 40 433135
The holiday park "De Kempervennen" is the bungalow park during the IOI'95 week. The price for a 6 or 8 person bungalow for a (long) weekend will not exceed 1,200 Dutch guilders. "De Kempervennen" can be reached by bus from Eindhoven within half an hour. A railway journey between Amsterdam and Eindhoven takes about one hour and a half.
Center Parcs "De Kempervennen"
Kempervennendreef 8
5563 VB  Westerhoven
The Netherlands
Phone  int + 31 4902 83333
Fax    int + 31 4902 42547
In Zandvoort the holiday park Gran Dorado is close to the beach and the railway station, and within half an hour by train from Amsterdam Central Station. The price for a 6 or 8 person bungalow weekend will not exceed 1,400 Dutch guilders.
Bungalow Park "Gran Dorado Zandvoort"
Vondellaan 60
2041 BE Zandvoort
The Netherlands
Phone  int + 31 2507 20000
Fax    int + 31 2507 16149
In Wassenaar the holiday park Duinrell is also close to the beach and within half an hour by bus from The Hague Central Station. You can reach the main cities Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht within less than one hour by train. The price for a 4 or 6 person bungalow will not exceed 800 Dutch guilders. Bungalows for 8 persons are not available.
Bungalow Park "Duinrell"
Duinrell 1
2242 JP  Wassenaar
The Netherlands
Phone  int + 31 1751 19314
Fax    int + 31 1751 12339

Minutes of the International Committee Meeting at Eindhoven University of Technology

Ries Kock and Tom Verhoeff

Date, participants and purpose of meeting

The International Committee (IC) met in Eindhoven from October 27 to October 30, 1994. The purpose of this meeting was to evaluate the IOI'94 in Sweden, to prepare changes in the regulations (if necessary), and to discuss the preparations for the IOI'95 in The Netherlands: the plans for the competition, the social and cultural program and the accommodations.

Invited were:

Changes in the IOI regulations

At the meeting The Netherlands proposed a number of changes in the regulations. A list of suggested improvements was completed on the basis of direct experience in previous olympiads and the study of previous regulations and the regulations of other science olympiads. The IC discussed the proposal and accepted several changes. Péter Hanák (Hungary), Peter Waker (South Africa) and Ries Kock (The Netherlands) will be responsible for the formulation of the renewed regulations. These will be sent to the participating countries in March 1995.

The most important change concerns the format of the regulations. The regulations will consist of two parts:

Changes in the competition

The scope of the IOI has been a topic of discussion for many years. It was also on the agenda of the IC meeting in October 1991 (see the
IOI'92 Report, page 22). The IC then stated:
"During discussions on future developments of the IOI particular attention should be given to the following areas:
a) possible new problem domains
b) team work problems."

The Netherlands submitted a proposal to the IC for extending the scope of the IOI. This extension should be a gradual process. The long-term goal should be to make the IOI a general informatics competition, not just a programming contest. The exact form still needs to be found, but a suggestion is to have two competition days: one empirical day involving the use of computers, and one theoretical day without direct use of computers. This resembles the other science olympiads (apart from mathematics). The proposal was accompanied by extensive motivation.

For the short-term The Netherlands proposed to include one "different" problem on the first competition day (both days will have three problems). This problem is an informatics problem that will not require special knowledge or skills. It will fulfil such requirements as being neutral with respect to culture and gender, etc. Furthermore, it will not be too far removed from the current programming-contest problems. The IC accepted this proposal, provided that it will be carried out with the utmost care. The next IOI'95 Newsletter will carry two examples of different problems.

The permanent IOI Secretariat

During the final meeting of the International Jury at IOI'94, the Turkish team leader inquired whether someone would be willing to set up a permanent secretariat for the IOI. At that meeting no volunteers stepped forward.

The International Committee finds it desirable to establish such a permanent IOI Secretariat. This IOI Secretariat will collect, maintain, and disseminate IOI-related material. Thereby it helps ensure continuity in the development of the IOI.

During a meeting of the International Jury at IOI'95, the International Committee will officially propose to establish a permanent IOI Secretariat. Eindhoven University of Technology in The Netherlands has offered to implement the IOI Secretariat (see below for more information).

National Flags

During the meeting of the IC the Dutch organization offered to organize the collection of National Flags for future IOIs starting in 1995. Every country is hereby asked to take its own National Flag to the IOI. This flag will be kept at the Permanent IOI Secretariat in The Netherlands and transported to every future IOI. The dimensions of the flags should be approximately: 1.50 meter x 1.00 meter.

Announcing the Sweden IOI'94 report

The Swedish organization has announced that in the first half of 1995 a report of IOI'94 will be sent to each participating country.

A Personal View on IOI'94 in Sweden

Tom Verhoeff

In this view I give my personal impression of how I experienced the competition and the social program. The document goes almost parallel with the whole story of IOI'94. If you want to read it completely, it is available at the (experimental) IOI Secretariat on World Wide Web (WWW) via the Uniform Resource Locator (URL):
A PostScript version for FTP is also available under URL:

From the Introduction

The competition week is in Haninge, 20 km south of Stockholm. All students are put up in the luxurious Hotel Najaden. A hilarious situation arises when the elevator "refuses" to take some students to the fifth floor. It turns out that the hotel is built on the side of a cliff, the main entrance being at the fifth floor already. Behind the hotel, across the railroad, is a nice lake where one can go for a swim.

From the First Jury Meeting

The voting machine (claimed to be developed especially for the olympiad) is a story in itself. For each country there is a hand-held control device with three buttons (yes, no, reset) and two feedback lights (yes, no). All devices are attached to a central computer that counts the votes anonymously. An ill-positioned small monitor displays the remaining voting time (you get 30 seconds) and, when that time is over, the total yes/no counts. We vote several times about the voting machine itself (`Are you willing to use it?'). Depressing neither button `yes' nor `no' is the way to withhold your vote. I wonder what happens when you depress both `yes' and `no' (in that case, both lights come on). My watch tells me that the machine's 30 "seconds" elapse in about 25 seconds.

From Ericsson Day

The second speaker arrives late, is young, wears a tie and jeans, and is even more agitated than number one. He will tell us about robots. No, not those poor factory robots with only a few degrees of (motion) freedom. He pulls a six-legged cat-sized orange creature from his backpack and puts it on the table, where it starts to walk about noisily. These robots are not very interesting, he assures us. His love is for amorphous robots. These robots can change shape, split up and reassemble, etc. The story gets wilder and wilder. Colourful transparencies are presented as if they were a movie. Is he a professional entertainer hired by Ericsson, I wonder? He promises to prove to us that his ideas are not mere fantasy. All you need is a properly programmed computer and some attributes. First he shows us a one-page listing of some low-level C code driving the serial output port. Then he dives into his backpack and produces a notebook computer, a battery, a servomotor, and some wires. In a hectic few moments he connects everything and puts the servomotor, to which a little pointer is attached, on the overhead projector. After some tapping on the keyboard the pointer starts to turn. This is a real proof at its best. The crowd cheers. When he puts the "dull" orange "insect" on the floor, everybody surges forward to take pictures and it seems to get out of hand. It takes minutes before everyone is seated again. I do not envy the next and last speaker.

The IOI on Internet and the IOI Secretariat

Tom Verhoeff

Sweden set an example at IOI'94 by bringing the olympiad to the Internet, the international computer network that is rapidly growing in popularity. The Netherlands will turn this example into a tradition with IOI'95.

You can contact the organizers of IOI'95 by e-mail via the address
Furthermore, we have set up some World Wide Web (WWW) pages with information on IOI'95. The Uniform Resource Locator (URL) of the IOI'95 Home Page is
New information about IOI'95 is constantly added to these pages. You can access these pages by so-called `WWW browsers', such as Mosaic, Netscape, Lynx, etc. This requires access to Internet.

In the process of organizing IOI'95 we have also collected material about past IOIs. This material forms the basis of an experimental IOI Secretariat. You can find it at URL
If you have comments or submissions for the IOI Secretariat, then please send them to
You are encouraged to start a WWW Home Page for your country's national informatics olympiad.

We are working on a method to distribute this information also to people who cannot access WWW (for instance, by putting it on a floppy with a small browser program).

The IOI'95 Logo and Poster

In Sweden some of you saw the logo and poster for the IOI'95. We hope you all like the design. Of course we used the tulip as the symbol for the forthcoming Olympiad. As you may see the tulip consists of various parts of hard- and software. We are sure you will see a lot of posters and the logos in the next half year.

IOI 95