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Christopher Chiesa
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I've been programming for 20+ years on a multitude of systems, and have been praised up, down, left and right for my extremely good technical skills. However, I still may not be able to whip up a good algorithm in an interview context, because one of my best skills is KNOWING WHERE TO LOOK THINGS UP. In any realistic job situation I have always had access to books, other programmers, and/or the Internet and/or other reference materials, and am extremely good at using these to ask precisely and exactly the questions needed to solve any given problem. At this very moment I would have to look up the algorithm for the "smallest common multiple of two numbers," to which I have been exposed exactly once -- when I first encountered it, in a graduate-level Computer Science course just last year. (The professor seemed shocked that nobody in the class knew this "familiar" equation, but I had never seen it in a class, book, or work context.) I can whip up a string-reverser in no time, though. :-)
Toggle Commented Mar 12, 2010 on The Non-Programming Programmer at Coding Horror
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Mar 12, 2010