The race is on to find the best online coder, as registration for the 2006 Google Code Jam US heat starts. You have until September 5th to sign up if you want to prove you are king of the American coders by solving a series of problems to test both your programming skill and creativity.

Last year more than 14,500 coders took part in the global event, covering 32 countries, and the results are already in for both the European and Indian heats.

The top 100 contestants will be transported, all expenses paid, to the New York offices of Google Engineering on October 27th for the grand finals where a prize of $10,000 is up for grabs, as part of a total prize pool of $155,000. But this really is not about the money, it is about showcasing your coding prowess and winning that title.

The competition presents contestants with a series of problems meant to test their programming skills and creativity. This year's grand prize is $10,000. Smaller amounts are awarded to the top 100 developers. Google gives away a total of $155,000 in prize money.

Of course, Google has an ulterior motive: it wants to attract the cream of development and engineering talent to work there. And get through to the finals and cream of the crop really is a deserving title. For example, at the European heat finals in Dublin competitors had to devise their own algorithms and gain points for remaining uncracked, while losing points if any of the other competitors broke it. All against the clock, naturally. If you are a whiz in Java, C++, C#, VB.NET or Python then this is the ultimate challenge.

Now wouldn’t it be cool if a DaniWeb member won the thing?

Isn't this just some clever recruiting drive by Google, at the end of the day?

Is that a complaint (last comment)? working at Google would be an awesome career opportunity.

Dunno, I think it is a win-win thing to be honest. Lots of people want to work at Google, and it wants the cream of the crop so such a competition is a great way of finding just that.