The Physics Students' Association of Eötvös University, Budapest and the
Hungarian Association of Physics Students proudly announces the traditional,
29th--and for the first time international--
Rudolf Ortvay Problem Solving Contest in Physics,
The Ortvay Contest is an old tradition at Eötvös University. Many former contestants have become famous scientists and university professors, and they had showed their first marks of genius fighting with Ortvay-problems some years ago.
For the first--hopefully not last--time, the contest is announced internationally in 1998, giving a good occasion for students of different universities and countries to cross their swords of knowledge, ingenuity, problem-solving skills and physical insight into problems that are far beyond routine-level. Although prizes are given only to individual participants, such an extensive contest also means a rivalry among the universities guiding the intellectual development of the contestants.
Every university student can participate in the Ortvay-contest. The name, the university, the major, and the university year should be given.
The problems of the contest come from different branches of theoretical physics as well as applicational fields of physics. The assigned problems do not focus on school-level problem-solving routine but rather on the skills of physical way of thinking, recognition of the heart of the problem, and the appropriate choice in the mathematical armory. The majority of the assigned problems are original, few have been published in problem-books.
30 to 35 problems are assigned each year. These are of different levels of difficulty, and every contestant can find problems appropriate to their university level. Each contestant can send solutions for 10 problems. For the solution of each problem 100 points can be given.
Any kind of reference may be consulted; textbooks and articles of journals can be cited. The contestants are kindly asked to present the solutions of different problems on different sheets. Computer programs appended to the solutions can be enclosed on floppy disks, or sent via email to the address given below.
The problems can be downloaded from the webpage of the Ortvay contest (http://ludens.elte.hu/ortvay) in Hungarian and English languages, in html and LATEX formats from 12 o'clock (Central European Time), Friday, October 30, 1998. On preliminary requests sent to firstname.lastname@example.org , the problems will be sent via email, too.
If an institute were to be represented by several contestants, the
voluntary application of a teacher or a student for being a local organizer
would be most welcome before 27 October at the above address. Her/His task
would be to advertise the contest well in advance, as well as to copy the
problems sent before noon on the 30th, and to distribute them at 12 o'clock.
On 9 November he/she is asked to collect the solutions of the students of
the institute and to post them to the referees.
The contest will be evaluated separately for each university year, according to the total number of points. The referees reserve the right to withhold or to share some prizes. Beyond the money prizes given for the first, second, and third places, honourable mentions and special prizes for the oustanding solutions of individual problems can be awarded. This is why it is worthwhile sending even one or two solutions.
The traditional sponsors of the contest are the Students' Foundation of the Faculty of Sciences of Eötvös University, and the Roland Eötvös Physical Society. Their help is highly acknowledged.
The announcement of the results will take place on 3 December. The detailed result will be available on the webpage of the contest thereafter. Diplomas and money prizes will be sent by mail.
You are kindly asked to distribute the above information in your institute. Please prepare a placard, put the info to the webpages, newsgroups and mailing lists frequented by the physically-inclined students. It would be a great pleasure to have many participants of many countries in the first international Ortvay contest.