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20 years CodeIT programming competition

София, 15.06.2020

The 20th anniversary award ceremony of the international programming competition CodeIT, organized by Musala Soft, gatherered a number of contestants and partners. The event was held online on June 15th, 2020. The President of the Republic of Bulgaria, Rumen Radev, as well as the Deputy Minister of Education Karina Angelieva addressed the guests.

In his speech President Radev stated, "Dear contestants, you are the ones to ensure that high technologies and products with high added value are developed in Bulgaria. As for the finalists from the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Northern Macedonia – tha fact that you are a par of the final round of the competition is extremely important, because the future of the countries in our region depends on our common digital connectivity. Through CodeIT, you all share experiences, discuss and build your vision of how to better build this connectivity. ”

Karina Angelieva, Deputy Minister of Education and Science, added: "CodeIT is not only a programming competition,  but it is also a platform for young people's dreams. Thanks to the organizers who for these 20 years have managed to create a sustainable network of followers who develop the IT sector.

Ms. Elena Marinova, Presidend and Co-founder of Musala Soft, who hosted the event, told the exciting story of the competition. "Ever since we founded Musala Soft perseverance, combined with continuous development and innovation have been among our core values. Why have we organized CodeIT for 20 years, you may ask? We believe that it is important to give back for what you have received and to create a better environment for development, both for ourselves and for everyone around us. There is no better way to do this than through education and training. At Musala Soft we are always on the crest of the wave. We created and developed this elite competition with harsh rules and challenging tasks that only the best can solve: those who will be driving force of the development of technologies.

The winner of CodeIT 2020 is Victor Lucic from Serbia, a student in the Faculty of Computer Sciences in Belgrade.

Final Ranking:
1. Viktor Lucic  -  a student in the Faculty of Computer Sciences, Belgrade, Serbia
2. Encho Mishinev – a student at the University of Cambridge,  from Yambol, Bulgaria.
3. Andon Todorov - 10th grader, Sofia Highschool of Mathematics "Paisiy Hilendarski", Sofia, Bulgaria
4. Aleksa Plavšić  – 4th year student at  Union University, Serbia
5. Blagojce Pavlevski – Jahya Kemal College, Skopje, Northern Macedonia
6. Martin Kopchev - 10th grader, Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Academician Ivan Gyuselev", Gabrovo, Bulgaria
7. Viktor Kojuharov - 11th grader at the Mathematics Highschool "Baba Tonka", Ruse, Bulgaria
8. Rumen Mihov - 10th grader at the Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Atanas Radev", Yambol, Bulgaria
9. Emil Indjev – 2nd year student at Oxford, Computer Science, from Ruse, Bulgaria
10. Georgi Petkov - 10th grader, First Private School of Mathematics, Sofia, Bulgaria
11. Novak Zivanic  - student in the Faculty of Computer Sciences in  Belgrade, Serbia
12. Antony Gospodinov - 12th grader at the Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Atanas Radev", Yambol, Bulgaria
13. Dushko Obradovic – informatics teacher at the highschool of the town of Sombor, Serbia
14. Stoyan Malinin - 11th grader at the Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Academician Boyan Petkanchin", Haskovo, Bulgaria
15. Ivo Karagyozov -  Highschool of Mathematics "Dr. Petar Beron", Varna, Bulgaria

Junior ranking:
1. Nemanja Majski -  Primary School  “Dositej Obradovic", Sombor, Serbia
2. Deyan  Hadzhi-Manich - 8th grader at the Highsool of Mathematics "Dr, Petar Beron", Varna, Bulgaria
3. Yasen Penchev - 8th grader, Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Academician Ivan Gyuselev", Gabrovo, Bulgaria
4. Aleksandar Gubica - Primary School  “Dositej Obradovic", Sombor, Serbia
5. Daniel Koynov – 7th grader, Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Nancho Popovich", Shumen, Bulgariа

In honor of the anniversary edition of the competition, a total of 20 talanted participants were awarded: the 15 best contestants and 5 highest ranking junior contestants (up to the 8th grade). For the first time the final task was available online to anyone who would like to take part in the competition's final.

Contestants who have participated multiple times through the years received special anniversary certificates in three different categories :
  FIERCE FINALIST – contestants who have made it to the highest number of finals : Veselin Georgiev – 9, Alexander Georgiev - 8, Plamen Tomov – 5, Rumen Hristov – 5
LEGENDARY WINNER – contestant winning the first place the most  times: Petko Minkov with 3 wins (2001, 2002, 2005)
STRONG WILLPOWER (2010-2020) – contestants who have participated in over 20 rounds – a total of 29 participants.

Video addresses were made by long-term partners of the competition - Yordanka Fandakova, Mayor of Sofia Municipality; Dimitar Nikolov, Mayor Burgas Municipality; Pencho Milkov, Mayor of Ruse Municipality;  Stefan Stoyanov, Deputy-Mayor, Education and Business Development, Plovdiv Municipality; Rosen Plevneliev, President of Bulgaria 2012-2017; Alexey Hristov, Chairperson of the Managing Board of  the Natural Sciences Olympic Teams Association and many others.

IT talents, who have been a part of Musala Soft's team and the competition's organization for the last 20 years also sent video congratulations on the 20th anniversary – Svetlin Nakov (SoftUni), Boris Strandjev (Qualifast).

Special thanks to our patrons and sponsors who provided the awards and supported us in organizing CodeIT, season 2019-2020. Sponsors: American Foundation for Bulgaria; CIELA Publishing; Janet 45 Publishing House; AMG Publishing; Freckles; ASBIS; Brother; Cougar Gaming for Bulgaria; ERP Academy; Edoardо Miroglio; JOY Optics; Grand Optics; Next Level; Samsonite; Speedy;Ubisoft; ZEISS VISION CENTER. Patrons; the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Informatics and Mathematics with BAS; Mathematics Highschool "Baba Tonka", Ruse;  the National Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Academician Lyubomir Chakalov"; Highschool of Natural Sciences and Mathematics "Academician Nikola Obreshkov", Burgas; the Vocational Shool for Computer Programming and Innovations, Burgas; Sofia University  "St. Kliment Ohridski" and its Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics; Sofia Highschool of Mathematics "Paisiy Hilendarski"; Technical University, Sofia and its Faclty of  Computer Systems and Technologies;  Electronic systems Technological School, Sofia; University "Angel Kanchev", Ruse;  Professor Asen Zlatarov University, Burgas; A&B School – Shumen; Shikovi School of Informatics, Yambol, etc.

History of CodeIT 2000-2020: Created by Musala Soft in the year 2000 as a national competition together with the then leading IT magazine, PC Magazine, as media partner, nowadays CodeIT gathers hundreds of participants form Bulgaria and the world. In 2011 the competition changed format: each season was divided into two competitive parts  – SPRINT (5+3 tasks) and MARATHON (1 task). The stages include "fast and slow" tasks divided into 6 rounds. The 12 best contestants throughout the year make it to the big final. In season  2013/2014 the competition became international and Junior tasks (for participants up to the 8th grade) were introduced, which was a crucial step for early recruiting of young talent for the field of sciences and technologies. The TOP 5 Juniors of each season take part in a separate final.

Since 2007 the competition is under the patronage of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria: Georgi Parvanov (President of Bulgaria 2002-2012), Rosen Plevneliev  (President of Bulgaria  2012-2017) and Rumen Radev – President of the Republic of Bulgaria since 2017.
So far over 2000 contestants from 15+ countries have participated in CodeIT. An elite team of more than 35 contestants and olimpians in informatics in Musala Soft (CSLAB - Computer Science Lab) is responsible for preparing the tasks – over 350 of them for the last 20 years.
Our partners from the the state, academia, education, science and business are more than 100 and the prizes for the participants – over 3000. Since 2012 Musala Soft invites a top guru in competitive programming each year to give and inspiring lecture for the finalists. So far, we've had as guest lecturers: Bruce Merry (South Africa), Przemyslaw Denbiak (Poland), Petr Mitrichev and Gleb Evstropov (Russia), Pascal Pons (France), Vasil Biletskyy (Ukraine), Ivan Katanic (Croatia), Scott VU (USA). This year, the contestants met with Yuhao Du (China).

Honorary Chairperson of the jury since the launch of the competition, Krasimir Manev, who is also the President of the International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI) and Chaiperson of the first European Junior Olympiad in Informatics (eJOI), Bulgaria 2017 (and presently – its President) said, "Just as the latest innovations are tested in Formula 1, CodeIT is our laboratory where we test various technological theories, test algorithms and assess what tasks to include in the training of our athletes and Olympians in computer science."