Mountain View, California (EastBayDaily) — Mirantis, an engineering services firm delivering OpenStack and application infrastructure expertise, is the only commercial organization in the world whose engineers took three of the top 50 places in Google’s Fall 2011 Artificial Intelligence (AI) Challenge. Mirantis engineers took the 6th, 24th, and 41st places, out of a total of 7900 entrants in the competition. They outperformed engineers from all other companies, even the competition sponsor, Google.
The 2011 AI Challenge, which concluded after three months of intense competition, is the third in a series of AI programming contests sponsored by Google. It aims to create a face-off between the brightest AI developers around the world. The winners of these challenges, whether professional programmers, semi-professional, or amateur, are expected to be tomorrow’s AI innovators.
“Seeing our engineers voluntarily consistently finish these competitions with impressive results is a great testament to the quality of engineering talent that Mirantis offers to our customers,” noted Boris Renski, Mirantis co-founder and EVP.
The Google competitions attract programmers from around the world, from companies such as Microsoft, Yahoo, Amazon, Google, IBM, and others, as well as university students. This year’s contest, Ant Wars, involved developing an AI engine to drive a virtual colony of ants that compete for food against each other. Contestants wrote a “bot” that played the game against other entrants. Last year’s competition was Planet Wars.
Mirantis is well-known for its engineering talent. The company’s engineers took first place in the renowned ACM International Programming Contest, which attracts entrants from six continents. One Mirantis engineer won second place in the OpenSpaces.org Developer Challenge for the most technically innovative entry for open source frameworks.
Mirantis has a large number of Russian-trained engineers. Russian software developers have a strong heritage of winning international programming challenges. The Russian primary education system has always emphasized excellence in math and science. It is estimated that Russia has about 3,500 engineers per one million people, ranking just behind the US and Japan. Because Russian universities focus heavily on training engineers for very complex engineering tasks, the country’s talent pool offers unique capabilities.
Many US-based companies aside from Mirantis, such as Google, Oracle, Siemens, Intel, Boeing, IBM, Dell, Motorola, LG, EADS/Airbus, and Citibank, have established a presence in Russia or invested in Russian-based companies to take advantage of the strong technical talents of Russian engineers.
In this Google competition, Russian engineers representing various commercial organizations and Russian universities dominated, taking 16 of the top 100 spots. US engineers finished second with 14 spots in the top 100.
About Mirantis Mirantis is an engineering services company delivering open source application infrastructure and OpenStack expertise. Clients include Cisco, GE Money and Agilent. The company is headquartered in Mountain View, CA and currently houses one of the largest groups of OpenStack experts under a single roof. Mirantis works with middleware vendors, compute infrastructure companies and Fortune 1000 enterprises, helping them to extract value from OpenStack. http://www.mirantis.com.