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Geeks glitch out at Nerd-a-thon

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Disclaimer: this article is purely fictional. It’s the fun section, after all.

By Bianca Bharti

After a fourth-year computer science student won Ryerson’s first ever Nerd-a-thon, other competitors rallied in anger, throwing around and breaking each other’s laptops in the Launch Zone at the SLC on February 8, causing $12,000 in damages.

The competitors, mainly computer science and electrical engineering students, said that Derek Cant was a professional coder and should not have been allowed to compete in the cup to begin with.

“It’s not fair. He competes in these competitive programming competitions all the time, so obviously he’s going to be better than us amateurs,” said Terry Ng, a third-year computer engineering student.

For winning first place, Cant received a $100 cash prize – that was what upset students the most.

When Rider Graeme, the event coordinator, called Cant up to the front of the room to hand him his prize, a student picked up Cant’s laptop and whipped it towards him and Graeme.

Neither of the two were hurt, however Cant began crying. His laptop had been damaged so he dropped to his knees to pick up the pieces.

“I just wanted to start this event to help my fellow students learn how to code complex problems quickly,” said Graeme, a third-year computer engineering student.

Graeme said that the problems competitors had to solve were the kinds an applicant at Google would have to solve in an interview. “I didn’t mean to start a frenzy.”

Second and third place winners walked out with $50 and $25, respectively.

“I felt like I was kind of conniving,” said Cant. “I really only came tonight to promote my coding club. We do things like this all the time and I wanted to show that to other coders.”

Cant said he will be seeking legal action against the student who broke his laptop.

Graeme will have to pay out the rest of the damages from his own pocket.


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