On March 1, we celebrated the Latin American coding community by hosting the first-ever Google Code Jam Latin America competition. Registrations definitely exceeded expectations: more than 5,000 eager programmers from around the continent signed up. The Code Jam consists of two online rounds, in which participants compete to solve three coding problems more quickly and accurately than their competitors. Then we invited the top 50, who came from across the region (and included one woman!), to compete in the onsite finals at our engineering office in Belo Horizonte.

This year's grand prize went to Fábio Dias Moreira, a student at Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro. The winner of the 2004 Global Code Jam, Sergio Sancho of Buenos Aires, took second place. Here's a photo of me with Fábio just after he'd won.

This Code Jam also featured Google engineering presentations and information about our R&D activities in Latin America. We're delighted that so many of the finalists expressed their interest in joining Google. If you're interested yourself, visit our global jobs page.