Friday, June 10, 2005

Brother's Wedding

The last few days where exceptionally busy… many guests came, now school exams and ISPs are piling up, but I got time to make this nice sketch of brother and his newly acquired wife.

I must say, I am not an artist, so I had to wait five days to get this picture “cleared” - in case if I made Yana fat; however, judging by how I drew the picture, that would only happen if she really was fat - in which case, my brother would be very humiliated if the world knew the truth, and if also I posted it - man, he would really kill me. Good riddance, its not true!

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 07:31 PM / Comments (2)

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Visit to the Apple Store

A while ago, I heard that the first Apple store was coming to Canada… the “Grand Opening” being today at 9:30am, and so I decided to pay a visit. With this purpose, I left home at 6:50am and arrived shortly after. There were around 200 people already there before me, the first few of which have slept-in-wait overnight.

Behind me, there were a few movie people talking about Final Cut Pro 5, and how good it was, and how they were standing in line to buy it but were afraid it would be out-of-stock by the time they entered the store. Something was so familiar about them, I have definitely seen them before. Somewhere. In front of me were two sobs discussing Tiger, and how you could write a virus using widgets. “Its hacked,” one of the guys exclaimed.

And there was this one Second Cup agent who offered to reserve people’s place in line, for anyone who wanted a drink. One guy took this opportunity to go to Starbucks. The store itself was very nice, I got a chance to screw around with equipment including a G5 attached to 30” monitor (trust me, its big). I also got a chance to pull the iPod cords and crack a few jokes at the “geniuses” in the “bar”.

By the time I left, the line was well over a 1000 people (half were outside the mall). Being in the first 1500 visitors, I was given a complimentary T-Shirt on my exit. Its kind’da crappy, but its the good kind of free crap. :D

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 09:00 PM /

Friday, May 6, 2005

York Science and Engineering Olympics

You know Science Fairs? Well I’ve been to York… and was involved in two events: Robocoding and Fermi Questions. We wasted half a day sitting and 30 minutes competing, but I guess I skipped school… so it was a fun waste of time (this time).

For Robocode, Ivan and I had made two robots, which we named after ourselves. During qualifiers, our robots achieved an early lead: alternating 1st and 2nd; however at round 7, their system crashed and all but two robots were paralized and could not move/rotate/shoot (essentially were stationary targets). The two robots quickly took advantage of this, and got extraordinary points by shooting down the dummies. When the York people had realized that their program crashed, they stopped the simulation and awarded the victory to one of the abusers, and thus, we did not qualify. What a disappointment: our robots were just so well made!

As for Fermi Questions, we pretty much dominated. We finished a few minutes ahead of time, only to find out that we have made a slight mistake in one of our calculations. Of course, we fixed it (and finished the contest again). In the last few minutes, I remember myself being bored; I was dancing on desks and flicking the lights on and off. The door had a window, so the graders outside thought that I was out of my mind… and that we would never win, but guess what? We won (and got our 1st place golden T-Shirts).

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 05:47 PM /

Monday, April 18, 2005


Well, its time to write the third and final of the Canadian IMO team selection contests… the USAMO is the American competition, and if you do well enough, you get to go to Washington (all expenses paid) and a chance to win an outrageously large sum of American money. Its modeled after the IMO, two days - four and a half hours a day. I will be giving you (two) updates on my progress.

Update: Actually, there was another contest - the Euclid - which I pretty much aced, but I don’t consider it important for a separate entry. As for the USAMO, I pretty much screwed it up, but perhaps not as badly as I think. Oh well, there is always Day 2.

Update 2: I did good today, this makes me happy. The second problem had to do something with points colored red and blue. The first thing I wrote was: “Since, I am using black and blue pens, I will refer to them as such.” Funny thing is, I only wrote in blue pen (never used the black one) and in any case - that doesn’t matter as the papers are faxed. Wheh.

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 04:25 PM /

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Jury duty

No, not that kind of Jury duty… I mean Math Battle! Well, in case if you don’t know: Math Battles are like solving math problems, but in the form of a game. Teams alternate presenting and refuting solutions; the Jury evaluates their work and assigns points. More detailed rules here.

My “fellow” co(n)-jurors were two graduate students, Fernando and James (I remember them from the Differential Topology lectures) and Robert Barrington Leigh (former IMO teammate). Smart people, you gotta admit. The teams were Don Mills (not surprisingly, I judge my own people) and a borg collective known as the East Asian Gangsters. And can you believe it, despite all my efforts… those Gangsters won, :(.

Actually, it had nothing to do with my efforts, but more with Don Mills messing up (they just couldn’t challenge the right problems). As for the Jury, well we flunked out last with 21 (out of a total of 96) points. Heh.

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 09:06 PM /

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Canadian Mathematical Olympiad

Yeah, another contest again. Well, actually its a little more than another contest, because you get nice 1337 prizes. But other than that, its just one of the three to get into the IMO team (so I have to do try a little harder). The time control is 5 questions for 3 hours, usually ends up being a rush in the end. Most of the marks are for style - for the neatness, clarity of the solution (something I really need to work at). In any case, wish me luck. We’ll see how well I do tomorrow.

Update: The CMO was significantly harder than that of the past two years. I ended up solving the first four questions, which would be good - if they were perfect write-ups. Given that the CMO folk like to deduct marks, my mess in question 3 could prove quite damaging, which would be equivalent to screwing up. I still did well, its not like I did bad, but money wise, I won’t get rich. I had some ideas on number 5, but not much (they can provide some compensation).

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 07:09 PM /

Sunday, March 13, 2005

APMO coming up soon

Very soon in fact, because it will be happening tomorrow. APMO stands for the Asian Pacific Mathematical Olympiad. The thing is, I don’t know why I am writing it, because I am not Asian nor Pacific, but I have been writing it for quite a while now, and they didn’t kick me out then, so I doubt they will kick me out now. Usually, it happens on a March Break, but now our March Break has been shifted a week ahead so I am going to take a day off school instead. Its your typical 4 hour - 5 questions olympiad, shouldn’t be anything too hard. I will tell you how I do after, ok?

Update: I solved 1 and 3 completely, my number 4 is messed (solution is generally correct, but unfortunately, I maximized a given variable, we will see how well that turns out), my number 2 is just wrong and 5… Its just a stupid diagram (and a bunch of special cases, but no general formula). Slightly frustrating I must say.

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 12:07 PM / Comments (2)

Monday, March 7, 2005

AIME tommorow!

I usually announce contests one day in advance, and wouldn’t want to break the tradition now (even though I won’t have this luxury at the IMO, maybe someone can do it for me? Nah, there is always future posting). The AIME is the second stage of American Math Contests, and the road to the USAMO (if you do well). In any case, wish me luck, and I guess, until tomorrow.

Update: Okay, the AIME went (relatively) well. I solved 13 (not too sure about the last two), but made two mistakes (as I said before, not that my answers weren’t wrong, just the questions) so am expecting 11/15.

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 08:29 PM / Comments (2)

Monday, February 28, 2005

CCC tomorrow!

Well, the T-of-T is over, and its time to write yet another competition (CCC - Canadian Computing Competition). Its from 2 - 5 pm, and the cost is $7. The room is 114. If you don’t know this, you are probably not writing it. The AMC results came in, and I got 132.5 instead of 136 which I conjectured earlier. Must have left another question blank. Bummer. More to come tomorrow!

Update: I think the CCC passed well, lets hope that the CCC people think the same way :). I solved 3.5 questions, who knows, will that be enough to qualify for stage 2!?

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 05:48 PM / Comments (2)

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Tournament of Towns

Yes, the date is tomorrow (for the A-Level). I wish myself, and other fellow participants good luck. You may find detailed information here (I have designed the website). Speaking of which, Janos still didn’t write about his experience in Mir. More to come tomorrow.

Update: So, how well did I do? Very. I pretty much finished the first few questions, the last few questions, and everything in between. The first few questions took little time, the last few took a little more. Didn’t get everything done though!! My last T-of-T and a big disappointment!

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 07:48 PM / Comments (1)

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

AMC 10/12 tomorrow

Anyway, its just another math contest (25 questions for 75 minutes - multiple choice), you know they are fun… Good luck and remember to come at 8:30 AM tomorrow morning. There are two dates, so some of you might have written it already. More information at the AMC page. More to come after I write it.

Update: The contest is over, and I think I did reasonably well. My results: 21 correct (x6), 4 (x2.5) unanswered yielding 136 points out of a maximum possible 150. The minimal number of points needed to qualify for AIME (the next stage) is 100. I guess, I could have done better if I actually concentrated on getting the remaining questions done, but was tired and my mind was all over the place - I sort of did them but my answers didn’t really match up with the choices so I left them blank. My answers weren’t wrong, only the questions were wrong.

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 04:41 PM / Comments (3)

Tuesday, February 8, 2005

Its a whole new semester

This is a good thing, because my readership is bound to increase. I am going to make some new friends (people seem pretty cool), meet the old friends, learn some new stuff, pick up some new ideas - which are all good things, but most importantly, I have new grounds to advertise the Big Party. I will lure more suckers here (this isn’t a very nice thing to say, don’t worry, I don’t really mean it). Think of it as my grand plan. I think then will the blog achieve the critical limit (every logistic has to settle at one point or another), but in any case, its more money for me.

Last time, I have noted that politics became history, in both senses. But you can extend the transition further: philosophy has replaced chemistry (both teachers talk a lot, non-stop and have no clue what they are talking about) and physics is the new exercise science (but now we are doing the real stuff and the people are still losers). Well, English is still English. Semester 2 feels like semester 1, except the timetable is all screwed up.

Posted by Oleg Ivrii, 07:47 PM / Comments (3)

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