On the FAQ, it says that “Again, CF problems and contests are significantly different from USACO!”. Could someone elaborate? I am using CF problems, about 2200-2600 rating, to practice for the platinum division, but if the problems are actually “significantly different”, then I will probably choose some other practice problems.
Yes, CF is quite different from USACO.
CF is more speed-based and more “ad-hoc”, while USACO is more implementation-based and more “algo”.
However, I recommend doing CF problems regardless since they will help your logical reasoning skills which are vital in all divisions of USACO…