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Northshore students ‘Hunt the Wumpus’

  • Written by Shannon Michael, Features Writer

WumpusPhoto by Shannon Michael. Three teams of C# computer programming students at Bothell High School display their trophies won at Microsoft’s “Hunt the Wumpus” computer programming competition held June 7 at the company’s Redmond campus. BHS students won the top two prizes and a runner-up trophy, while a team from Inglemoor High School also brought home a runner-up trophy. For the better part of the last two months of the school year, Bothell and Inglemoor high school’s C# computer programming students were working hard on their programs for Microsoft’s "Hunt the Wumpus" competition.

Microsoft hosted the culminating event for this competition at their Redmond campus on June 7. Instructor Alec McTavish, of BHS, brought 50 students to the competition, while Inglemoor’s Tom Donnelly brought 57 students.

The remaining high schools entered in the competition were Interlake, Newport, Redmond and Sammamish. Each school had teams of five to six students who worked as a team on the computer program they entered into the competition.

During the judging, each team’s computer program was judged by two Microsoft employees: one judge focused on the game-play of the program, while the other focused on the quality of the underlying C# code.

Up for grabs at the competition were five trophies: one for "Most Innovative," one for "Best Implementation," and three runner-up trophies. Of the five trophies, the two Northshore schools brought home four.

The "Most Innovative" trophy went to the "Bothell Surprise" team, comprised of BHS students Cameron Doane, Dominic Brown, Joseph Prachar, Trevor McAllister-Day and Peter Berge. Doane and Brown are advanced programming students, Prachar is in the C#-Intro class, while McAllister-Day and Berge are students who took the course last year and competed then but wanted to enter the competition again this year.

The team started working on their project last fall, and began serious work on their program in January.

The "Best Implementation" trophy also went to a BHS group, the "Blue Team." Isaac Renfrow, Anton Nachmanson, Alon Patashnik, Kien Chin and Michael Dulin are all C#-Intro students who began their project in mid-April.

BHS’ "The Muffin Men" team of Alex Anderson, Brendan Waltman, Nick Hosler, Keven Yarnell and Corey Floberg, all C#-Intro students, brought home one of the runner-up trophies.

The Inglemoor team of Kyle McCrohan, Alex DeJardin, Jenny Liu, Christian Amer, Alnur Elberier and Matt Alexander also received a runner-up trophy.

In addition to the judging competition, Microsoft had guest speakers and a question and answer session with a panel of software engineers.

The computer programming class, currently offered at Bothell and Inglemoor, is a hands-on course that gives students the opportunity to learn Java and C# programming skills. Students learn programming language, gaming aspects and techniques, and Windows 7 programming.

Once students become comfortable with the basics, Microsoft brings in mentors to work with students in a gaming unit. Using Microsoft’s teamwork philosophy, students work in teams to produce a computer game for the "Hunt the Wumpus" competition.

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