The seeds of this idea were sown over a decade ago. With coding coming to be seen as a foundational skill in a world driven by data and digital ecosystems, a need was felt to create a gamified platform that would help develop the right programming talent. TCS CodeVita was the answer – a place where young minds could interact and sharpen their skills.
To support the multiple code submissions (340,000 in Round 1 of Season 9 alone!) across seven programming languages during the six-hour participation window for TCS CodeVita, a robust and scalable platform was needed. This is where the Performance Engineering Research Centre (PERC) arm of TCS Research (then at TRDDC, Pune) stepped in to help, creating the Mooshak framework that automates the submission, compilation and evaluation of the designed code.
While PERC built the framework that supports TCS CodeVita, what about the contest questions themselves, which attract a returning crowd of participants each year? These are curated by a community of experienced coders within TCS, called The Philacodist Club. The questions themselves range from being formula-based to algorithmic, and from ones with real-life applications to those relating to data structures. Categorized into simple, medium and complex categories, a set of six to 10 questions appears in increasing order of complexity.
TCS CodeVita started off as a team-based competitive programming event, turning into an individual programming competition Season 6 onward. In 2015, it entered the Limca Book of Records as the largest team programming contest in India. It witnessed 197,000 student registrations, 45,861 competing teams and over 236,900 code submissions that year.
Closing the Skills Gap
A partnership between the World Economic Forum (WEF) and TCS, the Closing the Skills Gap program aims to reskill or upskill 10 million people in the global workforce by 2020. This initiative has secured pledges from leading international businesses and seeks to equip 17.2 million people with digital skills. As of 2019, 6.4 million people have already been trained.
With its focus on upskilling the current workforce, preparing today’s students for 21st-century STEM careers and empowering women, ethnic minorities and marginalized groups, TCS’ CodeVita program aligns completely with our WEF commitment. The program has also helped in creating a cost-effective talent acquisition mechanism to seek and hone high-caliber digital talent.
Since 2014, TCS has made 11,110 offers through this program. In 2020 alone, Season 9 saw close to 3,500 total offers in the Digital and Ninja categories. Over the past couple of years, 250 students have also completed internships at TCS, with the Top 3 coders offered an opportunity to intern directly with the TCS Research and Innovation team.