In an effort to improve the features, usability, and quality of cloud computing, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) is offering $100,000 in prize money to developers who submit winning applications in its Cloud Prize contest.

The contest is divided up into 10 categories, each with $10,000 in prize money, awarded to developers judged by a panel of industry specialists. According to Netflix, the panel consists of notable experts including's chief technology officer, Werner Vogels; Thoughtworks' Martin Fowler; and Netflix cloud vice president Yury Izrailevsky, among others.

Categories include Best Contribution to Code Quality, Best Portability Enhancement, and Best Datastsore Integration.

Netflix currently utilizes cloud computing for its more than 33 million users, but recognizes there are still improvements to be made to what is a relatively new technology. According to Netflix chief product officer Neil Hunt, "Cloud computing has become a hot topic recently, but the technology is still just emerging. No doubt many of the key ideas that will take it to the next level have yet to be conceived, explored, and developed. The Netflix Cloud Prize is designed to attract and focus the attention of the most innovative minds to create the advances that will take cloud to the next level."

Application developers can find additional details on the Netflix Cloud Prize here.