8 Nisan 2010 Perşembe

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Let’s say that you have x different stocks, and the plots of their prices over time. You want to print them in newspaper, printing multiple plots on the same chart to save space. But here’s the catch: no two plots on the same chart can overlap, lest the readers be confused. Look at the plots and figure out the smallest number of charts required.

Looking for a challenge like the riddle above? And I mean an exciting brain-twisting and turning kind of challenge. I mean competing with fellow coders from around the world for top bragging rights kind of challenge.

Since 2003, we’ve brought you our annual Google Code Jam — a competition in which professional and student programmers from all around the world solve tough algorithmic challenges in a limited amount of time. Last year’s 23,000 contestants vied for the title of Google Code Jam champion. After five rounds and some furious typing, China’s Lou Tiancheng (code-named ACRush) was named champion.

Sound like the challenge for you? Well registration is now open. And you can try your hand at problems from previous competitions and get up to speed with the rules. We recommend that you practice hard — Code Jam is not for the weak of heart! And, this year we’ve decided to take the show on the road — for the very first time, the final competition will take place in Google’s Dublin office.

The qualification round starts on May 7, 2010 and after four rounds of online competition, the top 25 competitors will be flown to Dublin to match wits for the $5,000 first prize — and, of course, the title of Code Jam champion!

P.S. Have you solved our “Stock Charts” problem yet? Test your solution on the Code Jam website.

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