Code Busters

2019 Clarifications

  1. Would it be possible to convene a team of 3 for Codebusters?
      • No. This is a timed event. It is one of memory that each member must repeat a series of letters and numbers to the next member. Teams of less than 5 will have an advantage over other teams.
  2. Our Code Busters Team wants to confirm that each team’s total competition time is 5 minutes. Each team will only have five minutes to relay the complete set of codes they are given. As opposed to each team getting five minutes to relay one code (though hopefully not needing the full five minutes) then getting another five minutes to attempt the second code, etc. Five minutes seems like a short amount of time for what is a 30 minute event but makes sense if one team is competing at a time. This would allow the ES to focus on one team at a time and get several teams through in a 30 minute period.
      • Your logic is sound on the time it takes for this event to occur. The ES will have up to 6 teams to score within the 1/2 hour time. Only one team will participate at a time.

3. Why does it ask us to use the shift key? Kids will be using paper and pencil and each symbol on the key board has a name. For example: Shift and 2 = @. Instead of saying @, why do they have to know shift and 2 ?

      • What if the shift key is a part of the code?

4. Can the kids use their own created code words/sentences or use sign language to communicate the code among team members.

      • Students may not use sign language for this event.
      • The first part of this question is "over-thinking" the event. Students will be whispering a set of numbers, letters, keys and symbols made with a computer keyboard. Creating their own code may hamper their chances of winning the event.
      • Any team talking above a whisper will be disqualified.

5. Our code busters team would like to know whether the codes are available to the team for the full 5 mins, in case they want to break the code and send it across to their team? Or is one code available only once? Will all the codes be available to them at the beginning of 5 mins?

      • The first team member will see the code, a set of character created on a computer keyboard. They will relay this code to the second member and so on. The last member will write the code down for the Event Supervisor.
      • The first member may look at the code as often as the team wants.
      • The codes will be given one at a time. Member 1 may only see the next code after they have given the first code to member two. The members may not go out of order at any time.

6. Given that one code is a sequence of upto 10 characters, how many such codes do kids have to identify in the competition?

      • There will be 10 codes. Each team will see the codes in the same order. The rules specify how scoring will work.
          • Say the code is 1 2 3 4 5. The team writes down 2 3 4 5. The team will score no points because they skipped the first number. Using the same code another team writes X 2 3 4 5 will score four points because they have four numbers in the correct order and placement.

7. If they have say 5 minutes for a code to be relayed- can they break down the code into a group of 4/5 characters and relay ?

      • Yes, but remember member 5 is trying to write down as many characters as possible.

8. Do the students need to encode or decode any of the codes using a cipher?

      • No.