The University of Waterloo from Ontario, Canada, took the first-place gold medal and a $4,500 cash prize in the University of Chicago  Invitational Programming Contest  last weekend. Waterloo solved nine of 10 possible problems in 1,528 minutes.
In a programming contest, the total time is derived from the time used to solve each individual problem, rewarding teams that solve problems faster than others. Harvard University finished second, earning the second-place gold medal and a $3,000 cash prize. Harvard solved eight questions in 1,156 minutes.
Stanford and Princeton came in third and fourth, respectively. Each received a silver medal and $1,500. Stanford solved eight problems in 1,185 minutes, followed by Princeton’s seven problems in 826 minutes.
The University of Central Florida and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, respectively, stood fifth and sixth at the end of the contest. Central Florida solved seven problems in 918 minutes. MIT solved seven problems in 1,039 minutes. Both teams received a bronze medal and three $150 Amazon gift certificates.
The contest was sponsored by Palantir Technologies .
It was a tough day for the UChicago team, which did not solve any problems. Twenty-four teams, each consisting of three members, competed in the invitational. Click here for the final standings .
Twenty-two of the teams, including UChicago, next will compete in the World Finals of the Association for Computing Machinery ’s 2012 International Collegiate Programming Contest  May 17 in Warsaw, Poland. None of the UChicago team members have previously competed in a World Finals, unlike the teams from the last two years, which each had one or two members with World Finals experience.