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SPOTLIGHT

IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 7, 2014
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab
724.738.2199
karl.schwab@sru.edu

Computer science teams win $6,000

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Two, three-member teams from the Slippery Rock University computer science department walked off with first-place honors and $6,000 in prize money in the first Scholastic Challenge Programming Contest sponsored and organized by FuturePOS in Butler.

The mobile team, Rock Hard App, included Nicholas Botzer and William Botzer, both from Bethel Park and Zachary Petrusch from Pittsburgh. All three are computer science majors.

The web team, Rock Hard Web, included Tyler Bassett, an information technology major from Parker, Jacob Dunn, an information systems major from Harmony, and Eric McAlpine, a computer science major from Greenock.

Each team won $3,000.

Hongbo Zhou, SRU associate professor of computer science, served as the team's adviser.

FuturePOS, a local software company focusing on point-of-sale systems in restaurants around the world, is also developing a meal-ordering system usable on portable devices and in web browsers.

"FuturePOS, which has some 40 employees, is one of a leading companies competing with other big names in this field and wins a substantial market share successfully. Last year, they celebrated their 15-year anniversary," Zhou said.

The programming contest started last November in two categories:

•Mobile app development, in which team members need to use a third-party tool called "Corona SDK" to develop programs that would run on both android tablet/smartphones and iPhone/iPad, and;

•A web app development, in which team members need to create some web application.

The mobile team developed the "Labyrinthian" program, a single-player dungeon crawler role-playing game. The player's goal is to descend to the final floor of the labyrinth to defeat the evil Demon. Along the way, the player encounters and must beat numerous adversaries.

The SRU web team developed an online note-taking program based on plain text formatting language called "Markdown." The program user can turn simple text to beautifully formatted and organized notes.

Judging was based on reviews and comments from company employees.

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.