Monthly Archive for March, 2010

Visa Applications

After several months of waiting, several emails, and several phone calls, we finally obtained a general clearance to issue invitations (in German: “Generalverpflichtungserklärung”) for visa applicants from the Austrian Federal Ministry of Internal Affairs today. This greatly simplifies the procedure of issueing visa invitation letters for us. Unfortunately, applying for and receiving Austrian visas is still a very complex bureaucratic process. (Austria is infamous for its bureaucracy. And for one time, the cliches are true, unfortunately.)

To be honest, I feel ashamed for my country that the government makes it so difficult for interested and motivated young people to come here to compete in this extraordinady competition called IYPT. I apologize in advance for any troubles and inconveniences that Austrian authorities might cause you in order to get your visas.

100 day countdown

If the javascript counter used on our homepage is correct then it’s only 100 days to the 23rd IYPT. My suggestion to the LOC to compose and sing a song to celebrate this (I had something like this in mind) sadly didn’t go through ;)

Availability of our registration software

We are glad that some of you like our registration system so much, that you’ve asked if you can use it for your own competitions. Sadly in general the anser is no:

We do not have any time at all to support this software. There are no bug fixes, no customizations etc.

This is not uncommon for software and often the decision is to make it available “AS IS” – without any guarantees or support whatsoever.

However we do not think, that a bunch of php files that are highly specific to our infrastructure would be of help to anyone.

Besides we do not feel good about the idea of releasing something that does not yet meet all of our own standards concerning software. There are still quite a few hacks in there, things that are only acceptable if used for our own project.

To use our code, to adapt it for your own projects, you’d need someone matching our own (modest) php/mysql skills. If you have such a person, then letting them start from scratch will probably be less work. If you don’t, then our software – in its current state – will be of no use to you anyway.

Registration started

Our registration system has just gone live! Emails with account data (username and password) will be sent to everyone who has pre-registered soon. Please be aware that this system has been custom made by us – so it is certainly not bug free. If you encounter any problems, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

To log in, select your team from the drop-down list and enter your password.
After you have logged in, you can enter all the information about your team. You can edit and change the information later at any time.
Please be very careful with the information you enter. We will use this data for printing name badges, certificates, etc. Also, for those of you who need visas for Austria, this information will be used for the official visa invitations. Thus, make sure that names, dates of birth, passport numbers, and dates of arrival and departure are all correct!
The deadline for registration is May 31 2010. You can, however, edit the personal information of team members up until June 25 2010. [Note however that this is most certainly too late to make changes to official visa invitations!]
The registration fee is due by May 31 2010, and will not be refunded if you withdraw your registration at a later time. It should be transfered to the following account:
Name of Bank: Raiffeisenverband Salzburg, Filiale Linzer Gasse 877664
Owner of Account: LOC IYPT2010
Account Number: 9401 4347
Bank Code: 35094
IBAN: AT07 3509 4000 9401 4347
BIC (SWIFT-Code): RVSAAT2S

We have taken a big effort to ensure that the registration system works smoothly. Nevertheless, if you have any questions, or encounter any technical problems, please do not hesitate to contact us via info@iypt.at. We will do our best to help you.

Pre-Registration Finished

The deadline for pre-registration has passed yesterday. 27 teams have pre-registered, so we are looking forward to a big and interesting tournament. Actually, we had hoped to get at least 28 teams, so that the IYPT2010 would be the largest IYPT (in terms of competing teams) of all times. Nevertheless, 27 is a fine number, as it is divisible by 3. If no teams cancel, we will not have exhausting fights with 4 teams.

As Tim mentioned earlier, we are still working out a few issues with our online registration system. As soon as it is available, we will send out user names and passwords to all pre-registered teams, along with some general information on the registration process.

Google Maps

I was working on adding google-maps to our website the whole night.

After hours of searching and trying I was finally ready to implement everything… but then I saw a tiny button called “link” on the google maps website. Now that was – more or less – exactly what i was looking for. And of course I had seen it before…  just didn’t think about it.

What I could have done in 2 hours eventually took 8. The google-map-inlays will be online soon at http://www.iypt.at/en/iypt2010/location/

Here’s a preview the map!

Of course I will keep on working on the maps so you don’t have to spend too much time worrying about where to find your hotel :) ! I hope you will enjoy your stay in Austria!