In software development there are tons of various challenges or competitions, just take a look at stackoverflow.

Also, there are challenges with huge prizes involved, such as for netflix competition (data mining task for movie recommendations).

Even more, in software development learning is usually by solving puzzles, varying from such simple tasks as reordering of a stack or reinventing dijkstra algorithm to more complicated, such as AI for checkers.

These puzzles/competitions are not only great for competing, but they also 'force' you to search, study and improve your skills.

After having a quickie with google, I couldn't find much. There was a poster competition, we can also say that TSP or VRP is somewhat of GIS challenges. It seems that ESRI also held some kind of competition.

So my question is as following -- are there any competitions or (even more importantly) puzzles (for learning mostly) for GIS?

2 Answers 2


gis.stackexchange.com has encouraged me to 'search/study & improve' my GIS skills.

In the last year I have learnt a whole lot from watching the tags im interested in on GIS.se.

I do not consider questions on gis.se as a competition or a challenge, and only try to answer Qs that I think I have something to offer on.
- However, when I do answer a Q and I get credit for my answers, the reputation+ is def encouraging.

I like the idea of having a challenge tag for gis.se, but might be worth discussing what that would entail on meta.gis.stackexchange.com

  • 2
    I agree that this should be on meta. Both asking and answering questions on here (and other stack exchange sites), is a wonderful way to expand my knowledge.
    – Andy W
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 13:13
  • Yes this site is great for learning and almost any question could be considered as a challenge or puzzle. But I want something that would be more in a form of "given this data do this" -- a TSP would be great example of what I mean tsp.gatech.edu/data/ml/monalisa.html Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 13:30
  • 2
    @Andy This reply belongs on meta (due to its focus on GIS.SE and because it's difficult to construe it as a response to the question), but the question appears to be on topic for the main site, which welcomes a wide range of inquiries about anything related to GIS.
    – whuber
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 14:12

For GIS? or software dev? I found this for GIS:

Event Details:

The GeoTech Center is now accepting applications for the 2011-2012 National Geospatial Technology Skills Competition. The competition consists of three rounds:

  1. Round 1: Online Objective Exam (based on the Dept. of Labor Geospatial Technology Competency Model GTCM)

  2. Round 2: GIS Project video (5 minute YouTube video of student’s project)

  3. Round 3: Professional presentation @ the 2012 Esri International User’s Conference in San Diego, July 2012! (top 6 finalists receive a $2000 stipend to attend)

Students must qualify and register at: http://www.geotechcenter.org/. The Competition tab has the complete rules/description and registration form. Example videos from last year’s competitors are also posted on this link. Now is a great time to incorporate the Round 1 exam into your GIS course for Fall 2011 and Round 2 will be ideal for your Spring 2012 GIS course project.

  • Looks interesting, I wonder if Online Objective Exam will be posted freely for everyone Commented Sep 27, 2011 at 14:01

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