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Physics and Culture Olympiad

         The International Physics and Culture Olympiad – IPhCO – was born from a dream, to create a Physics Olympiad different from the traditional competitions. Nowadays, we have amazing resources available and therefore we are living in a new era. The IPhCO offers a new concept of learning and competition. It is aimed at today’s young people, who enjoy learning new things, but want to do so in a fun way. Whoever accepts this challenge will be carrying the Olympic torch in search of knowledge and will – along the way – discover new things and acquire knowledge related to several fields. At home or at school, our idea is to challenge our knowledge seekers, allowing them to travel on an independent, free, and creative path. Just like in a traditional Olympiad, you will be required to solve physics problems, but the IPhCO is different in a few ways:

Instead of receiving  the problem data, you will receive hints and puzzles. In some cases you will be required to solve a math puzzle, while in others you will walk through GOOGLE Street View and search for the information you need.

You will not have to solve the problems in a restricted environment. You will be able to do that in any place, as long as you have internet access.

Time pressure is lower. You will have a whole day to solve each problem.

The olympiad does not focus on testing your knowledge, but on helping you acquire new knowledge.

In this olympiad, knowledge is considered as a whole. The idea is to connect, rather than fragment.

Each week you will have the chance to participate three to four times. If you get one of them wrong, you can still continue. If you get the challenges right, you will be awarded a collectible postcard. Keep your eyes peeled for any mail being delivered to your house.


      We hope you have a fun journey and we say our farewells with an excerpt  from a poem by Konstantinos Kaváfis translated by Edmund Keeley & Philip Sherrard:


As you set out for Ithaka 
hope your road is a long one, 
full of adventure, full of discovery. 

Hope your road is a long one. 
May there be many summer mornings when, 
with what pleasure, what joy, 
you enter harbors you're seeing for the first time; 

Keep Ithaka always in your mind. 

Arriving there is what you're destined for. 
But don't hurry the journey at all. 

Better if it lasts for years, 
so you're old by the time you reach the island, 
wealthy with all you've gained on the way, 
not expecting Ithaka to make you rich.

Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey. 

Without her you wouldn't have set out. 

She has nothing left to give you now.

And if you find her poor, Ithaka won't have fooled you. 
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience, 
you'll have understood by then what these Ithakas mean.


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