Green Up for Grabs in Google Code Contest

Call it a classic clash of the coders. The place and prizes of a growing programming contest were unveiled this week, now Google just needs its participants─programmers who can back their swagger with skills.

The fourth annual Google International Code Jam will pit the best and brightest programmers against each other for bragging rights and a $10,000 prize. In October the company plans to fly the world’s top 100 coders to New York City to strut their stuff in front of Google software developers.

“The best coders in the word (and that includes you, if you’re up for the challenge) compete on speed and accuracy to solve challenging problems with only their brains, fingers and a computer,” said Craig Nevill-Manning, engineering director for Google. “Of course, we’ll be on the lookout for future Googlers─those who love solving tricky coding challenges, and are excited about solving the big, hairy, audacious goal of organizing the world’s information.”

The timed contest begins with an online qualification round where developers can compete in Java, C++, C#, VB.NET and Python programming languages. Contestants can cull reference materials (including the Internet) but cannot collaborate with any other person. And only original code can be submitted by participants.

The top 1,000 scorers from the qualification round will advance to round 1. The top 500 will then advance to round 2, which will narrow the playing field to 100 finalists to compete at Google’s Manhattan office.

In 2005 top honors went to Marek Cygan, a student at Warsaw University. Cygan out-dueled nearly 15,000 other programmers participating in the Code Jam. Last year Google saw the number of participants double, from 2004, and 32 nations were represented among the 100 finalists.

All 100 finalists are guaranteed a minimum prize of $750 and the all expenses paid trip to New York. Participants may register now through Tuesday, Sept. 5. The championship is scheduled for Oct. 27.

About the Author

Jason Turcotte is an assistant editor at Application Development Trends. He can be reached at [email protected].