Sport computer programming superstar Gennady Vladimirovich Korotkevich of Belarus won the 2017 Google Code Jam world finals in Dublin yesterday. This marks the fourth straight year Korotkevich, who looks a little like QB Tom Brady, has won Google’s programming tournament.
Also, this marks the 14th time in 14 years that a man has won the Google-sponsored contest. In fact, I am told, all the finalists ever in the history of Google’s event (there were 20 finalists flown in by Google to its Dublin office this year), have been guys. (Note that I haven’t been able to check that myself.) *
Commenter Candid Observer points out an interesting comment on Brooks’ NY Times column:
neal Westmont 34 minutes ago
Observation: Google has run a coding competition (Code Jam) since 2003. It attracts tens of thousands of applicants now, Including thousands of woman to compete in a multiple round contest leading up to a feld of 20 finalists. This is a “hard” advance competition – no bonus points awarded for, say, for lacking a penis. Google has used it to identify their best and brightest job prospects.
There has never been a female finalist. Ever. Unless you count “Code Jam for Women”, rolled out in 2014.
Probability alone would say that if only 5-10% of entrants were woman, and they were as likely to to have the same skill sets and ability as men, that we should have seen a female finalist by now. The numbers actually match nicely with the list of top Chess players, only which only 1 woman can really say she could/can compete at the highest level. None of this say anything about any individual male or female, other than that testing and real world competition have shown that in (at least) certain mathematical and spatial cognition tasks, there are far more men than women who are above average to the tune of multiple standard deviations. No doubt there are other tasks where men are more likely to appear on the low end. But that is not a useful and employable skill set at google.
* Update: Commenter Jimmyriddle points out that, judging by the picture of the 25 Google Code Jam finalists in 2011, one finalist appears to be a girl. So it’s probably an exaggeration to say that all the Google finalists ever have been male.