Top 10 Prestigious Programming Contests and Coding Competitions

The 10 Most Prestigious Programming Contests and Challenges

I’ve put together a list of some of the most popular programming contests and coding competitions in this article.You can level up your programming skills for many technical roles in these contests and competitions. These range from popular data science to software development and mathematical modelling to computational chemistry. Most of them are annual programming competitions, but a few are continuous and anyone can participate at any time. These coding competitions are open so participants can use C, C++, Java, Python, C# .NET or any other programming languages in these contests.

These competitive programming contests offer young and talented students and programmers the opportunity to measure their capabilities and compare themselves to other programmers worldwide. So, don’t lose courage due to tons of assignments to complete. You can also delegate them to a paper writing service while pushing your luck at the programming contests. By competing in these programming contests give you a deep satisfaction of being a fluent programmer.

List of Coding Competitions

These days several multinational software and internet companies, such as Microsoft, Google, Facebook and IBM recognize and support these competitive programming contests.

1) The ACM-ICPC International Collegiate Programming Contest

The ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC) traces its roots to a competition held at Texas A&M in 1970. It was hosted by the Alpha Chapter of the UPE Computer Science Honor Society. The contest fosters creativity, teamwork, and innovation in building new software programs, and enables students to test their ability to perform under pressure. Quite simply, it is the oldest, largest, and most prestigious programming contest in the world.

2) TopCoder

TopCoder is fast becoming the major league for programming competitions. TopCoder brings members together once a week to compete online (Single Round Match) and twice a year both online and on location (Tournaments). The Topcoder Open (TCO) is their annual programming and design contest.
The top ranked users on TopCoder are very good competitive programmers and regularly compete in programming competitions. The TopCoder community takes on challenges from world’s leading brands such as IMB, Google and eBay.

3) Google’s Coding Competitions

Google Code Jam is an annual programming competition in which participants are asked to solve complex algorithmic challenges in a limited amount of time. Programmers can use the programming language of their choice. This contest starts online and programmers can practice by trying out problems from past years.

Google Hash Code is coding challenge for teams of students and professionals around the world. Top teams will then be invited to a Google office for the Final Round.

Google Kick Start is a global online coding competition, consisting of three-hour rounds of a variety of algorithmic challenges designed by Google engineers. These competitions are held throughout the year and participants may get a chance to be invited to interview at Google.

Some of the past competitions are EuroPython and Code Jam to I/O.

4) The ICFP Programming Contest

The International Conference on Functional Programming ICFP Programming Contest holds every year, a few months before the conference. This is a fun and challenging three day open programming competition.

There is no entry fee or need to pre-register. Participants may work from any location. Participants may form teams and the teams may have any number of members.

5) BME International 24-hours Programming Contest

The Challenge 24 is a 24-hour international programming contest. The most important thing in this contest is that the participants can use their own computers. This gives them the possibility to work in their usual environment that fits them the best.

In addition, there are no restrictions on operating systems, development tools or programming platforms. Only the 30 best teams gets an invitation to Budapest, Hungary, where the ‘real’ BME Challenge 24 takes place. Electrical Engineering Students’ Hungarian Association organizes this contest.

6) The International Obfuscated C Code Contest

The International Obfuscated C Code Contest has been running for over 25 years now in 2020. Normally participants enroll and compete in the contest via email or online submission. All you have to do is write the most obscure or obfuscated ANSI C program in fewer than 4096 characters length according to the rules.

All entries must compile with GCC compiler and run under at least one flavor of UNIX. (e.g. Linux or Solaris).

7) Internet Problem Solving Contest

The Internet Problem Solving Contest (IPSC) is an online contest for teams consisting of up to three people. IPSC publishes several problem and coding challenges at the beginning of the competition. Some of them are unusual kinds of problems that will test your out of the box thinking.

For example, find three numbers such that x=y and y=z, but x≠z.

To solve a problem you will have to compute correct output data for the given input data sets. Usually this means that you will write a program that solves the problem, but you may produce the output by hand or in any other way.

8) Microsoft Imagine Cup

Microsoft Imagine Cup has been around for two decades now. This program invites participants to take on real-world problems submitted by IGOs, NGOs and non-profits that you can then take on as part of Imagine Cup project. Then put ideas into action as you create solutions that have potential to change the world.

The winner of the imagine cup receives cash prizes, Azure Grant, and a mentoring session with Microsoft CEO. The 2022 Imagine Cup is going to complete the 20 years of this contest and students can bring ideas to life in Earth, Education, Health, and Lifestyle categories.

9) Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) Codewars

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) Codewars is for high school students and takes place every year since 1999. The event successfully combines several quality ingredients, such as the high-tech environment, a wide range of programming challenges, large amounts of good “programmer” food (pizza and caffeine). Large number of computers, monitors, software, and accessories are also gifted to the participants. Supported programming languages for 2022 event include C, C++, Java and Python 3+.

10) OpenChallenge

Openchallenge is a catalyst for materializing creativity and for channeling open source potential into tackling real world problems. Openchallenge is and tries to be as free as possible from any bonds to any specific interest group.

All the entries submitted to OpenChallenge are published under open source principles and licenses.

11) Other Programming Contests

There are many other programming contests such as CodeChef, HackerRank, LeetCode, Codeforces, Project Euler, American Computer Science League (ACSL) and Facebook Hacker Cup to name a few. These competitions help students and programmers to gain knowledge of algorithms, computer programming, and problem solving techniques and help prepare for technical job interviews.

Further, Codeforces hosts a number of competitive programming competitions. It is a social network dedicated to programming contests and hosting programming contests for the past 14 years. Similarly, Japan based coding contest website AtCoder host three competitions i.e. Beginners, Regular and Grand Contest. Exercism is another coding challenge website that offers 3000+ challenges spanning 60 different programming languages.

Facebook CTF (Capture The Flag) is a cybersecurity competition organized by Facebook being held since 2011. CTF games (Jeopardy, Attack-Defence and mixed) also touch other aspects of information security domain such as cryptography, steganography, binary analysis, reverse engineering, mobile security and others.

Similarly, Kaggle Competitions hosts data science and machine learning competitions. The prize money in these competitions range between USD 500 to USD 150,000.

Watch the following video on Programming Challenges for further details.

Disclaimer: The author is not affiliated with any of the websites mentioned above.

Categories: Blog
M. Saqib: Saqib is Master-level Senior Software Engineer with over 14 years of experience in designing and developing large-scale software and web applications. He has more than eight years experience of leading software development teams. Saqib provides consultancy to develop software systems and web services for Fortune 500 companies. He has hands-on experience in C/C++ Java, JavaScript, PHP and .NET Technologies. Saqib owns and write contents on since 2004.
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