New Challenge By Facebook Not Likely To Make Olympics, But Offers Cash Prize

We’ve all seen track and field, the javelin throw and the high jump in Olympics competitions. But the latest announcement by Facebook takes competition to an entirely different level. It’s put out the call to coders around the world to participate in its second annual Hacker’s Cup challenge, slated to begin on January 20.
The competition will include 5 rounds of programming challenges and pit participants against each other. And the goal of the challenge is to find a top coder to help the company solve the problems often encountered when building prototypes for Facebook products or finding problem-solving methods that are more efficient.
Ironically, skilled programmers are hard to find in the industry. But Facebook is proud of the ‘hacker culture’ which exists in the company, even sending invitations to security experts to communicate the details of any vulnerabilities found within the social networking platform for a monetary reward. It has also held several ‘hackathons’ with its staff to help boost product development.
The initial Hacker’s Cup round on January 20 will qualify participants with a 72 hour round. The competition’s remaining 3 rounds will narrow the list to just 25 participants who will be flown to Facebook’s California headquarters to engage in the final round, where the winner will receive five thousand dollars in cash.
With nearly 12,000 programmers participating last year in the Hacker’s Cup, the company is looking forward to lots of healthy competition from worldwide coders this year. Last year, the top prize went to a Russian coder who was also a Google employee.
Those who wish to participate in the Hacker’s Cup will be required to answer a timed programming question with one of eight programming languages including Perl, Ruby and Python. The tests, which can take up to two hours, include sample test cases which can be downloaded and tested against participants’ created code.

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