ZCO 2019 preparation

I am a beginner at competitive programming. i have a very very good taste of python . about its data structures and algorithm. i want to prepare for ZCO. but don’t know from where to start. as i don’t have any mentor please can someone help :innocent:
as i am currently in standard 7. it would be a miracle for me to clear this.

shall i shift form python to c++ in these 2 months
i have got a taste of searching, sorting, recursion , little bit dynamic programming but not graphs and not advanced dynamic programming. what should i do

as i have only 2 months left for ZCO 2019 . please someone kindly guide me

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what i could not understand

It would be better to shift from Python to C++, because from INOI onwards only C++ and JAVA are the languages supported.

What I have learnt is that I also have a good taste of DP, recursion, graph algorithms and all, but can rarely implement those in my solutions. Yes, I do implement them now, but when I started in class 8, I couldn’t.
So it is better to practice problems, take part in contests etc, coz you might know stuff, but sometimes its difficult to implement them.

Hope this helps.:slight_smile:


thnx for your help. how many days you think will be required to shift to c++ and how to master c++. also what is the most common type of problems in ZCO as i have only 2 months left. what should be my strategy?

See in the contest page, there is one contest named ZCO practice contest, do that. About changing to c++, “google baba” is there. Search, you will find good links.


things similar about us-python and age(one year older) and we both are giving for first time

now what I am doing to convert to c++ is half the times when I am solving problems in practice especially ZCO and INOI i am coding it in c++.
Learning basics of c++(loops functions) is easy but main thing is learning data structures and STL-especially vector,pair,list,array and heaps.

ZCO is mostly DP and for DP you don’t need much advanced data structures.

take part in codechef contests and it is the best way to learn.they are also some cool tutorials on iarcs website you can check them out

also practice brute force(if you don’t want risk) as cutoff of ZCO is mostly very less but still try for 200.
don’t forget to solve the ZCO and INOI problems before exam.

c++ benefit is that sometimes your solution is correct in python but it gets TLE while same solution gets AC in c++ example-COKE2,DESTCELL in last to last lunchtime contest


If you don’t know absolutely nothing about C++, I’d choose to be a bit risky here. I’d not choose pure C++ (Modern Ones, GNU C++). I’d go for Turbo C++ (Outdated for 30 years). The reason, it was still in practice in CBSE Schools and you’ll easily get along with it. Then, start changing from Turbo C++ to Modern GNU C++ Compiler. That’d be smooth transition.

But, as always, that’s not an advise. That’s risky and you should know the consequences if you couldn’t do it.

I agree on the point, but the problem here may arise that there are a very few or no coding platforms which support turbo C++, so according to me, its better to change to C++ directly.

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last thing , which topics should i focus greatly. some are saying that graph will not come in ZCO should i not focus on graphs


You should mainly focus on dp. Dp will come for sure.
For graphs, you don’t need to know shortest path algorithms. Simple dfs and bfs along with the problems on which they are implemented will do.

graphs come in INOI for that learn dfs bfs floyd warshall djikstra and bellman ford and basic dp on trees

what is dp? I don’t know anything like that, but I manage to solve most of it without it.

what the heck language is that?

Dp stands for dynamic programming, Google it

DP is important. It is basically storing the computed values in an array, so that we don’t have to traverse it again and again, thus reducing the time complexity of the program.

These are graph algorithms. Depth-first-search, Breadth-First-Search,
Shortest path algos like Floyd Warshall, Dijkstra, Bellman Ford etc.