This is not a promo of any sorts, I have no affiliation with this website that I want to tell everyone about, I just think it's great.
Go to www.topcoder.com, they have competitions about twice a week for PROGRAMMERS in C++ and Java (I posted this same exact message in the C++ forum). The competitions are an hour and 15 minutes of straight coding. You get 3 problem sets of varying difficulty, and if you get a good score you actually get some $$$. I found this site a few days ago and am sooo hooked on it right now, I'm just trying to tell every programmer I know about it! And the chances of winning are really good, because they split all competitors into rooms of 8 per room, and top 3 coders in a room get some cash prize (division 1 is $300, $150 and $75, div 2 you get $150, $75, $25)
I actually placed in 3rd in div 2 first time I competed, and im not taht great. And besides the money its a really good way to sharpen your coding skills, they have practice sessions open all the time. I never even knew anything about STL a few days ago, now im all into it.
Anyway, check it out, if you think it's interesting register. If you WANT to, you can actually refer me by the same nick as here, ByteMe95. And then when you register get all your coder friends to join and have them refer you!
Not to mention they have employers checking out the site for good coders all the time as well.
Hope this isnt some kind of advertising breach, because its not, im just trying to make this site known to all hobby programmers out there!