Irish Students Seek Title of ‘World’s Top Language Decoder’ in Beijing

CNGL International Linguistics Olympiad Team 2014Four Irish secondary school students from Dublin, Antrim, Kerry and Cork are ready to pit their language decoding skills against the world’s best at this week’s International Linguistics Olympiad (IOL) in Beijing, China. The students honed their problem-solving skills at a training camp in Trinity College Dublin, last week, where they were tutored by experts from the CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content, which is also sponsoring their trip.

The International Linguistics Olympiad (IOL) challenges students to apply logic and reasoning skills to solve complex language puzzles in unfamiliar languages. Students from 30 countries are engaging in code breaking challenges, which they are tackling individually and in teams. Examples include the requirement to decipher hieroglyphics, deduce logical patterns of Swahili, and interpret Sanskrit poetry.

Representing Ireland in Beijing:

CNGL International Linguistics Olympiad Luke Gardiner

Luke Gardiner, Gonzaga College, Dublin

Luke Gardiner of Gonzaga College, Dublin, Matthew Nixon of Aquinas Grammar School, Co. Antrim, Jane D’Altuin of Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí, Co. Kerry, and Daniel Herlihy of Douglas Community School, Cork. The four finished ahead of 2,600 opponents in this year’s All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad (AILO) to book their places in the final.

AILO is run by the CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content, a Science Foundation Ireland-funded research centre led by Trinity and co-hosted in Dublin City University. Competitors require no prior knowledge of a second language because even the hardest problems require only reasoning skills, logic and patience. AILO is now the largest of the Irish scientific Olympiads.

CNGL International Linguistics Olympiad 2014 Matthew Nixon of Aquinas Grammar School, Co. Antrim,

Matthew Nixon, Aquinas Grammar School, Co. Antrim,

 

 

Competitor Matthew Nixon is looking forward to seeing how far his code-breaking skills can take him against the world’s best this week. He said: “Taking part in AILO was my first experience of Linguistics and I have really enjoyed putting my language and logic skills to the test as well as learning new problem-solving techniques. It is a fantastic opportunity to travel to Beijing as part of the Ireland team to compete against the top linguists from all over the world.”

 

CNGL International Linguistics Olympiad Daniel Herlihy of Douglas Community School, Cork

Daniel Herlihy, Douglas Community School, Co. Cork

 

Second-time International Linguistics Olympiad competitor Daniel Herlihy added: “This competition has granted me an amazing opportunity to represent my country, and has really improved my problem-solving skills. After the International Linguistics Olympiad in Manchester last year, I spent months dreaming about Beijing and competing in this year’s contest. To get the chance to do this all over again is simply unbelievable.”

Professor in Computer Science in the School of Computer Science and Statistics at Trinity, and Director of All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad organisers CNGL, Vincent Wade, said: “The four members of the Irish team for the International Linguistics Olympiad won the opportunity to represent Ireland by beating off stiff competition from more than 2,600 decoders at CNGL’s All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad. CNGL is delighted have a very talented team of students to represent Ireland at the International Linguistics Olympiad in Beijing and we are confident of a strong performance on the world stage.”

CNGL International Linguistics Olympiad, Jane D’Altuin of Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí, Co. Kerry

Jane D’Altuin of Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí, Co. Kerry

The International Linguistics Olympiad aims to inspire the next generation of multilingual technology graduates, who can combine computational thinking with advanced language skills. Many important industry sectors require graduates with this powerful combination of skills, including the multi-billion euro digital content sector in which Ireland is a world leader.

You can follow the Irish team’s progress in the competition via Facebook and Twitter

 

 

About the International Linguistics Olympiad:

The International Linguistics Olympiad has been held annually since 2003. Each year, teams of talented young decoders from around the world gather and test their minds, in unfamiliar languages, against some of the world’s toughest puzzles in logic and linguistics.

  • Teams from 30 countries will compete in the International Linguistics Olympiad 2014 from 21-25 July at the Beijing Language and Culture University in Beijing, China.
  • Ireland has entered a team each year since 2009, and team members are selected on the basis of their performance in the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad (AILO).
  • AILO is run by the CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content, which is funded by Science Foundation Ireland and industry partners. More than 7,500 secondary school students have competed in the Irish competition to date.
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International Linguistics Olympiad Training Camp 2014 Schedule

This week, the CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content is hosting a three-day International Linguistic Training Camp to prepare the Irish Team for the International competition next week in Beijing.

The 12th International Linguistics Olympiad (IOL) is fast approaching, and this year’s Irish team; Luke Gardiner (Gonzaga College, Ranelagh, Dublin, Matthew Nixon (Aquinas Grammar School, Belfast), Jane D’Altuin (Gaelcholáiste Chiarraí, Kerry) and Daniel Herlihy (Douglas Community School, Cork) are making their final preparations for their Saturday departure to Beijing for next week’s IOL competition.

The team earned their places as Ireland’s top four problem solvers from a starting Line-up of 2,600 students from 23 Counties across Ireland in the CNGL All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad (AILO) competition, and in preparation for the challenging competition the Irish team are participating in a three-day CNGL hosted training camp, where they will solve puzzles and receive linguistics training covering topics such as; phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax and writing systems. The team will even take Chinese lessons to help them communicate will in Beijing.

Good Luck to this year’s Irish team as they battle against top problem solvers from all over the world!

International Linguistics Training Camp Schedule

Wednesday, 16th July 2014

Time Session
10.00 Training Camp Introduction
10.15 AILO 2014 Questions
11.00 BREAK
11.30 Chinese Lesson
12.30 LUNCH
13.30 Intro to Linguistics I – phonetics and phonology
15.30 BREAK
16.00 Intro to Linguistics II – morphology and syntax
17.00 Individual Problems
18.00 DINNER
19.00 Film/discussion/games

Thursday, 17th July 2014 

Time Session
09.30 Intro to Linguistics III – writing systems
10.00 Individual Problems
11.00 BREAK
11.30 Chinese Lesson
12.30 LUNCH
13.30 Visit to TCD Speech Communication Lab
15.30 BREAK
16.00 Team Problems
18.00 DINNER
19.00 Film/discussion/games

 Friday, 18th July 2014 

Time Session
09.30 Team Problems
11.00 BREAK
11.30 Chinese Lesson
12.30 LUNCH
13.30 Puzzle Games
15.00 Free time for last-minute preps
18.00 DINNER
19.00 Film/discussion/games
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Ireland’s Top Young Problem Solvers to Take On World’s Best Decoders in Beijing

Four secondary school students from across the island of Ireland will team up to test their language decoding skills against the world’s best at the International Linguistics Olympiad in Beijing, China, in July. The students, from Dublin, Antrim, Kerry and Cork, finished ahead of 100 opponents in the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad (AILO) Finals, which were recently held at Trinity College Dublin.

AILO is run by CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content, a Science Foundation Ireland-funded research centre led by Trinity and co-hosted in Dublin City University. It challenges students to apply logic and reasoning skills to solve complex language puzzles in unfamiliar languages, with the aim of inspiring the next generation of multilingual technology graduates to possess a powerful blend of language competency and problem-solving expertise.

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All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad 2014 Winner, Luke Gardiner

Individual Contest Winner

Luke Gardiner of Gonzaga College (Dublin) was the overall winner of the individual competition. He will be joined in Beijing by fellow ‘Team Ireland’ members Matthew Nixon of Aquinas Grammar School, Co. Antrim, Jane D’Altuin of Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí, Co. Kerry, and Daniel Herlihy of Douglas Community School (Cork). Matthew, Jane and Daniel finished second, third and fourth respectively in the individual competition.

Starting Line-up of 2,600 Students from 23 Counties

From a starting line-up of 2,600 students that spanned 23 counties, the top 100 sleuths battled it out during individual and team contests at AILO. Competitors engaged in ‘code-breaking’ challenges to unlock information in unfamiliar languages. Students could have been asked to decipher ancient hieroglyphics, translate Sanskrit poetry, or decrypt Armenian railway maps. No prior knowledge of a second language was required because even the hardest problems required only reasoning skills, logic and patience. This year’s individual contest included puzzles in Cameroonian Pidgin English, the Navajo Native American language, and the Ilokano language of the Philippines.

Luke Gardiner, overall winner of the individual competition, is looking forward to pitting his wits against students from over 30 countries during a week packed with puzzles and cultural experiences in China in July. He said:

“I’ve hugely enjoyed my experience of the Linguistics Olympiad, particularly the team section. It’s great to work things out by bouncing ideas off other people. I look forward to the International Olympiad in Beijing, which is a wonderful and exciting opportunity.”

Matthew Nixon, runner-up in the individual competition, which won him his place in ‘Team Ireland’, added:

“I am so glad that I have taken part in the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad. It was my first experience of Linguistics and I have really enjoyed putting my problem solving skills to the test.It will be such a fantastic opportunity to travel to Beijing as part of the Ireland team this summer and compete against linguists from all over the world.”

Fellow ‘Team Ireland’ member, Jane D’Altuin, who gained her place by finishing third in the individual competition, added:

“I’ve been having a great time doing the Linguistics Olympiad, both working individually on questions and combining efforts in the team round. I greatly look forward to going to China and hope to make friends with members of international teams as well as the members of my own.”

Daniel O’Herlihy of Douglas Community School, Cork added:

“I love the puzzles in this competition, it really opens your eyes to different languages and different ways of thinking. I feel my problem-solving skills have truly improved since doing this competition too. Of course, I can’t wait for the opportunity to go to China and represent my school, my county and my country.”

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Winners of the AILO 2014 team contest: Jane D’Altuin, Conor Kelleher, Luke Gardiner, Turlough Hannon

Team Contest Winners

In addition to the individual competition that put together the team heading to Beijing, there was also a team challenge at AILO. The winning team was made up of students from Gonzaga College (Dublin), Good Counsel College, Co. Wexford, and Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí, Co. Kerry.

Individual competition winners Luke Gardiner and Jane D’Altuin (Gonzaga College and Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí) were part of this winning team, along with Conor Kelleher (Good Counsel College) and Turlough Hannon (Gonzaga College).The teams in this section of the competition tackled problems in Swahili, musical code, and the Australian language Yidiny.

Inspiring the Next Generation of Multilingual Technology Graduates

Ireland is currently experiencing significant demand for multilingual technology graduates across diverse industries, including the multi-billion euro digital content sector.

Professor in Computer Science at Trinity, and Director of AILO organisers CNGL, Vincent Wade, said:

“The All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad hones students’ problem solving, lateral thinking and language skills, which are all key requirements in today’s global business world. By combining computational thinking and linguistics in a fun way, the contest is inspiring students to pursue third level studies at the intersection of computing, linguistics and language.”

In preparation for the AILO final, competitors received tuition from experts at CNGL, a €61 million academia-industry research centre that adapts and personalises digital content, products and services to the needs of global customers. They will receive further tuition before they jet off to represent their country in the Finals in Beijing later this year.

The Results

Individual Contest
1st Place: Luke Gardiner (Gonzaga College, Ranelagh, Dublin)
2nd Place: Matthew Nixon (Aquinas Grammar School, Belfast)
3rd Place: Jane D’Altuin (Gaelcholáiste Chiarraí, Kerry)
4th Place: Daniel Herlihy (Douglas Community School, Cork)

Team Contest

Luke Gardiner (Gonzaga College, Ranelagh, Dublin), Turlough Hannon (Gonzaga College, Ranelagh, Dublin), Jane D’Altuin (Gaelcholáiste Chiarraí, Kerry), Conor Kelleher (Good Counsel College, Wexford)

For more on AILO 2014, see www.cngl.ie/ailo or Follow us on Facebook

View the AILO 2014 Photo Stream

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Test your wits with the Round 1 Puzzles of the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad 2014

Have you got what it takes to solve some of the world’s toughest puzzles in linguistics, logic and language?

Test your mind against the languages of the world with the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad!

Round 1 of this year’s contest challenged students to decode problems in fasincating languages including:

  • The ‘visible speech’ writing system to help deaf students to pronounce spoken language more accurately
  • The Maori language of the indigenous people of New Zealand
  • Estonian
  • Turkish
  • The Kairak language of Papua New Guinea

No knowledge of particular languages or linguistics is required; even the hardest problems require only logic, analytical thinking…and plenty of patience!

Try out the puzzles for yourself:

Download the Round 1 Questions [pdf]

We’ve also supplied the solutions, so you can check how well you do. The top performer in Round 1 scored 88.8%

Good luck!

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Talented Decoders Bid for Title of ‘Ireland’s Top Young Problem Solver’ at Linguistics Olympiad

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Pictured at the national final of the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad 2014 are Chloe Fegan, Ayisha Din and Caroline Quinn of Rathmore Grammar School, Belfast

Language sleuths vie for place on Irish Team at International Linguistics Olympiad in Beijing

CNGL hosted the concluding stage of a nationwide search to find Ireland’s top young problem solver at the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad (AILO) Finals on 25 March 2014 at Trinity College Dublin. One hundred secondary school students tested their test their minds against the world’s toughest puzzles in  linguistics, logic and language. The prize for the top four decoders is the opportunity to represent Ireland at the International Linguistics Olympiad in Beijing in July 2014.

The Olympiad, run by the Science Foundation Ireland-funded CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content, challenges students to apply logic and reasoning skills to solve complex language puzzles in unfamiliar languages. It aims to inspire the next generation of multilingual technology graduates, who possess a powerful blend of language competency and problem-solving expertise.

From a starting line-up of 2,600 students across 23 counties, the one hundred top sleuths battled it out during individual and team contests. Competitors engaged in ‘code-breaking’ to unlock information in unfamiliar languages – from decoding an epic creation myth in the Buginese language of Indonesia, to deciphering the indigenous Blackfoot language of North America. No prior knowledge of a second language was required; even the hardest problems required only reasoning skills, logic and patience.

The top four performers will be selected to represent Ireland at the International Linguistics Olympiad, which will be held in Beijing, China in July 2014. There, Team Ireland members will test their wits against students from over thirty countries during a week packed with puzzles and cultural experiences.

Ireland is currently experiencing significant demand for multilingual technology graduates across diverse industries, including the multi-billion euro digital content sector. Professor in Computer Science at Trinity, and Director of AILO organisers CNGL, Vincent Wade, said: “The All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad hones students’ problem solving, lateral thinking and language skills – all key requirements in today’s global business world. By combining computational thinking and linguistics in a fun way, the contest is inspiring students to pursue third level studies at the intersection of computing, linguistics and language.”

In preparation for the final, competitors have received tuition from experts at CNGL, a €61 million academia-industry research centre that adapts and personalises digital content, products and services to the needs of global customers. The winners will be announced next week.

For updates, and to try out the challenging puzzles, visit www.cngl.ie/ailo

View the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad 2014 Photostream

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All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad – The Final 2014

There is excitement in the air as the All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad national final is less than one week away! This year the final is taking place on March 25th 2014 in the exam hall (public theatre) at Trinity College Dublin. All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad Final 2014

The finalists come from all corners of the country, and this year the top 100 problem solvers’ are representing 19 Irish counties and 46 schools. Over the last two weeks, the CNGL Centre for Global Intelligent Content organised specially trained tutors to visit the qualifying schools, and help students in their preparations for the final.

Registration on the day runs from 9.30am to 9.45am, so students should aim to arrive at the exam hall early on Tuesday to register and get settled before the contest. CNGL will provide participants with a breakfast pack, consisting of fruit, a cereal bar and water to keep them going before the contest starts.

The event kicks off at 10am with a two-hour individual contest, and students will each solve a set of puzzles in exam conditions.  At noon, there will be a break for lunch, and students can enjoy their lunch in the Trinity Dining Hall before the second part of the competition. The team event is the last of the day; students will spend another two hours working together in groups to solve even more complicated puzzles.

Congratulations and Good Luck to all the students who qualified for and are taking part in the final next Tuesday! For more interesting first round facts click here>>>

AILO 2014 National Finalists

County School Student Name
Antrim Aquinas Grammar School Matthew Nixon
  Methodist College, Belfast Daniel WrayKaren Wong

Krystyna Stasiak vel Staszczyk

  Rathmore Grammar School, Belfast Ayisha DinBen Carlin

Caolan McGarvey

Caroline Quinn

Chloe Fegan

Cormac Devlin

Eva-Jane Doherty

  Wellington College, Belfast Heather MillarKyle Graham

Nathan Wafflart

Naomi Dodds

Rachel Darragh

Cavan Home-educated Oisín Flynn-Connolly
Clare St Joseph’s, Spanish Point Tara Comber
Cork Ballincollig Community School Amy BrennanSinéad Corkery
  Douglas Community School Daniel HerlihyEmmet O’Sullivan

Krzysztof Wráblinski

Donegal Loreto Convent, Letterkenny Niamh Lynch
Derry Thornhill College Niamh Mulholland
Dublin Blackrock College Brian YipDavid Roper Nolan

Jonathan Hunter

Jonathan McDowell

Jack Hanrahan

Kevin Heavey

Michael Feely

Oisín O’Reilly

Séafra Ó Faoláin

  Gonzaga College, Ranelagh Aidan FitzpatrickBrian Hearn

Joseph Carthy

Jack Connaughton

Luke Gardiner

Turlough Hannon

  Loreto College, Foxrock Iseult JacksonKatie Griffin
  Mount Sackville, Chapelizod Aoibh QuinnClare Healy

Leanne Brosnan

Megan Conway

  Newpark Comprehensive School, Blackrock Ethan Hamman 
  Notre Dame, Churchtown Alia Abouelleil
  Oatlands College Vincent Chow
  St Joseph of Cluny, Killiney Carmen MaloyCiara Crotty

Chlöe Langan

Ellen Ashe

Megan Ross

Niamh Plunkett

Susie Moynihan

  St Kilians German School, Dublin Jacob SmithNorbert Rebow
  St Louis High School, Rathmines Finn BourkeRusha Landy

Sally Anne McCarthy

  St. Michael’s College, Dublin Conor O’BrienGary Mullins

Neil McCann

  St. Paul’s, Greenhills Patricia Gonzalez
  Tallaght Community School Ciara WalshDarren Scanlon

Michal Grudzien

Seán Nolan

  Templeogue College Seán O’Keeffe
  Trinity Comprehensive, Ballymun Victor Stoian
Kerry Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí Jane D’Altuin
Kildare Patrician Secondary, Newbridge Jack Moore
Laois Heywood Community School, Mountmellick Ella Barrett
Limerick Ardscoil Ris, Limerick Adam O HalloranAdrian Kehoe

Cathal Reynolds

Eamonn Organ

Eoin O’Brien

Mark Doar

Louth Drogheda Grammar School Cormac Newton
  Our Lady’s College, Drogheda Iesha MoustafaSarah Kieran
  St. Louis, Dundalk Sadhbh MurphySinéad Dullaghan
Mayo Mount St. Michael, Claremorris Ruth O’ConnorSofia Ferdini
  Jesus & Mary Secondary School, Crossmolina Kate Iarajuli
  Rice College, Westport Niall McGovern
  St Joseph’s Secondary School, Castlebar Laura CorbettLaura Ryder

Lucy Nyland

Roisin Rice

Sofia Vajenina

Meath Eureka Secondary School, Kells Branagh CarolanCiara Walsh
Offaly Colaiste Choilm, Tullamore Conor Murray
Tipperary Presentation Secondary School, Thurles Aida IzydorczykLia Grogan
Tyrone Omagh Academy Sarah Moses
Waterford Newtown School, Waterford Roberta DoorleyStephanie Ebert
Wexford Good Counsel College, New Ross Conor Kelleher
  Loreto Secondary School, Wexford Keerthi Ramesh
  Ramsgrange Community School Emma Tobin
  St. Peter’s College, Wexford Conor GaffneyGareth Jones

Luke Byrne

Michael McNamara

Wicklow Coláiste Ráithín, Bré Erika GalliganOscar de Bùrca Fernàndez

Contact Laura lgrehan@computing.dcu.ie, if you have any questions about the All Ireland linguistics Olympiad.

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All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad 2014: The Story so Far…

With less than one week to go ’till the national final of the CNGL All Ireland Linguistics Olympiad 2014, we’ve prepared an infographic that tells the story of AILO 2014 so far…

View infograhic

 

 

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