The International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI) is one of the most recognized computer science competitions in the world. The competition tasks are of algorithmic nature; however, the contestants have to show such basic IT skills as problem analysis, design of algorithms and data structures, programming and testing. The winners of the IOI belong to the best young computer scientists in the world.
The primary goal of the IOI is to stimulate interest in informatics (computing science) and information technology. Another important goal is to bring together, challenge, and give recognition to young students from around the world who are the most talented in informatics (computer science), and to foster friendship among these students from diverse cultures.
The first IOI was held in Bulgaria in 1989. It was proposed by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and is one of five International Science Olympiads for high school students throughout the world.
The IOI is organized annually in and by one of the participating countries. Each participating country typically sends a delegation of four students and two accompanying adults. Many countries organize a national olympiad in informatics to select the students they send to the IOI.
Students compete on an individual basis, with up to four students competing from each participating country (with more than 80 countries recently). The students compete individually and try to maximize their score by solving a set of informatics tasks during two competition days. Cultural and recreational events are organized on the remaining days.
The IOI Regulations constitute the official definition of the IOI. The International Committee supervises the IOI.