First place Topcoder hackathon team includes two from Rice
A team that included two graduate students in statistics (STAT) from Rice University won first place in this year’s Topcoder hackathon sponsored by Shell.
The 19th annual contest was held Nov. 13-16 in Houston. The winning team, named Dr. Rice, included Yinsen Miao and Yizhou Xia, both fifth-year doctoral students in STAT. The team’s third member was Jie Yang, a fifth-year biostatistics and bioinformatics student from the MD Anderson Cancer Center.
The team was awarded a $10,000 cash prize. Miao successfully passed his Ph.D. defense on Nov. 21 and Xia passed his Ph.D. defense on Nov. 7. All three are graduating this semester.
This year’s GameChanger Challenge was designed to forecast potential abnormal events during the deep-water drilling. The team successfully forecast the abnormal events 10 hours in advance using the gradient boosting tree and long short-term memory model. Shell expressed interest in their solution and will consider it for potential deployment.