A Teacher looks at Advent of Code 2016 #1

I recently posted about Advent of Code - a series of programming problems relseased one a day. While they vary in terms of level of difficulty, a number of them make nice problems for introductory to mid level programming classes. I thought I'd share some of my thoughts on a few of them starting with the first problem from this years competition. Take a minute to read it over. At first glance, it might seem to a young programmer that this problem requires a two dimensional array - all about (x,y) coordinates but then there's a problem - there are no limits on coordinates and we can't make an unlimited size array.

Inverted Index Project

I haven't spoken much about the class I've been teaching this semester. It's an intro CS course - a programming heavy intro. I decided to use Python with a transition at the end to C++. The transition is to mirror Hunter's normal first CS course that ends with a C++ intro to prepare the students for next semester's CS course which is a more intense OOP class using C++ - the language we use in our core courses.