With the ACM ICPC World Finals in Poland quickly approaching, we thought it was time to help you brush on up your Warsaw knowledge! What better way to truly appreciate your surroundings than by jumping head first into the history and culture of this brilliant city? Here are some quick facts to get you started:
Did you know?
- The official name of the city is The Capital City of Warsaw and it has also been known historically as Varsovia (Latin). A resident of Warsaw is known as a Varsovian.
- A quarter of the surface area of Warsaw is covered by “green space,” or a combination of eco-friendly structures and plant life. This green city is filled with small neighborhood parks, courtyards and streets lined by trees, large historic parks, nature conservation areas, and even an urban forest at the fringe of the city.
- Warsaw holds the distinction of opening the world's first public library in 1747.
- Some of the most renowned Varsovians include Marie Sklodowska-Curie, noted chemist and physicist, and Fryderyk Chopin, composer and pianist.
- Polish-born astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus was the first person to propose that the earth was not the center of the universe.
- Poland boasts 17 Nobel Prize winners, including four winners of the Nobel Peace Prize and five of the Nobel Literature Prize.
- Ninety percent of the Polish population has completed at least secondary education, the highest in the European Union. The name "Poland" comes from the name of the tribe "Polanie," which used to inhabit the western part of modern-day Poland. The term meant “people living in open fields.”
- Warsaw is one of the tallest cities in Europe, boasting 11 of the tallest skyscrapers in Poland. The tallest structure, Palace of Culture and Science, is the 7th tallest building in the European Union.
- In 2010 and 2011, University of Warsaw was declared the number one university in Poland in rankings published by the national daily, Rzeczpospolita, and the education monthly, Perspektywy.
- In June 2012, Poland, together with Ukraine, will host one of the most important sporting events all over the world – the 2012 UEFA European Football Championships.
We hope this information has gotten you as excited for the World Finals as it has us! We can’t wait to explore the historic city of Warsaw with you in just a few short months, and you can find more information on our host city on the ICPC Website. In the meantime, Tweet us your country’s most interesting facts with the hashtag #ICPC2012.