Facebook's annual hackathon kicks off in California today

By VCPOST Staff Reporter

Feb 21, 2014 11:35 PM EST

Facebook's famous Hacker Cup contest begins today at the social media giant's headquarters in Menlo Park. The competition will start at 2:00 pm Pacific Times, according to VentureBeat.

The twenty five contestants in the event hail from the US, Australia, Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Switzerland, Japan, Taiwan, and China. At 5:00 pm, a ceremony will be held at the Hacker Square to pronounce the winners. The first placer wins $10,000. The second and third placers receive smaller amounts of cash, the report detailed.

Now on its third year, the Hacker Cup has become a big yearly event for Facebook. Internal hacking contests, though, are still held by the firm. Software engineer David Alves conceptualized the said event, the report said.

In 2013, 29-year-old Russian hacker Petr Mitrichev won the first place in the Hacker Cup. He also won in the 2011 competition. Mitrichev is also a participant in today's hackathon, the report added.

Facebook said on its hackathon page: "Hackathons are a big tradition at Facebook. They serve as the foundation for some great (and not so great) ideas. It gives our employees the opportunity to try out new ideas and collaborate with other people in a fun environment."

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