Create your own Algicosathlon leaderboard

Everything you've ever want to know about Algicosathlons but have been afraid to ask. Including a simple guide to creating a leaderboard.

07 December, 2021 (last modified: 06 September, 2023) Case studies

Contents

Algicosthalon

How it Started

In March 2016, a seemingly innocuous video was uploaded to YouTube. Little did viewers know that this video would spark a cultural phenomenon in the digital sphere known as "Algicosathlon." The original video has since garnered over 4 million views, drawing attention from curious fans, aspiring creators, and educators alike.

What is Algicosathlon?

The term "Algicosathlon" blends three key components: 'Algi' referring to Algodoo, a physics sandbox software; 'ico,' the numerical prefix for twenty; and 'sathlon,' which is derived from the Greek word 'athlon,' meaning contest or event. Put together, Algicosathlon is a competition featuring 20 events, all of which are simulated using the Algodoo software.

The Original Format

The original Algicosathlon video presented a sports competition involving 16 athletes, each represented by a unique color. These athletes competed in a series of 20 different events, ranging from racing and obstacle courses to complex physical challenges that truly tested the boundaries of Algodoo's physics engine.

The scoring system was simple yet effective. Athletes earned points based on their performance in each event. Following the conclusion of each event, the athlete with the lowest cumulative point total would be eliminated from the competition. To add an extra layer of excitement and unpredictability, points were then multiplied by 1.5 (e.g., 100 points became 150), and rounded if necessary, before moving on to the next event.

Variations: Algodecathlon

While Algicosathlon involves 16 athletes and 20 events, the format has given birth to variations like the "Algodecathlon." In this iteration, 12 athletes of distinct colors take part in a decathlon, which comprises 10 unique events. Although the core principles remain the same, the reduced number of events and athletes offers a different pace and strategy, adding to the diversity and richness of the genre.

Why is it so successful?

For one, the unpredictable nature of the Algodoo physics engine ensures that no two competitions are exactly alike. It's also a great blend of education and entertainment, as it makes complex physics principles accessible and engaging to viewers of all ages. Lastly, it’s community-driven. The simplicity of the Algodoo platform allows enthusiasts to create their own events and variations, further fueling the popularity and diversification of the Algicosathlon world.

Since the original video, a plethora of series, spin-offs, and fan-created content has flooded YouTube and other social media platforms. The community has also used the format for educational purposes, employing it as a unique tool for teaching principles of physics, mathematics, and even teamwork.

Creating a leaderboard

If you want to create your own algicosathlon, then you'll need a leaderboard.

One option is to use Google Slides (see this tutorial).

Another option is to use the online leaderboard builder from Keepthescore.co. It is very well-suited because the leaderboards support elimination and setting of colors per participant.

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