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Joseph Connolly
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Wow, where to start? I think there should be some basic competency programming test, but it should be related to what the actual business needs. Here are two really quick examples. I code in VB.net and C# for .Net1.1+. I have never taken a programming class. I am just a natural at learning and problem solving. At any rate, I was asked in a phone interview the difference between a linked list and an array. The company does not do low level programming or code for mobile devices which would make the performance between the objects perceptible. At any rate, I didn't get a callback. After my friend/colleague pointed me then to a site which has the "10 most common asked phone interview questions"...Well can you guess what I was asked on the next phone interview? I had an actual in person interview with a web travel company. It was for a simple front-end/javascript/html/css development position. One of the interviewers asked me this complicated question regarding sheep, herdsmen and migration. I worked out the formula. He kept pushing for a different answer. I had no idea what he wanted. It made no sense. In the end he says "I was looking for 'Triangular Number'". Well I didn't go to school for math and have never heard that term of art for that formula. It wasn't enough to have solved it, but he wanted the exact term. AGAIN, this was for a simple front end job, much less complicated/difficult than was I was doing at the time. After all, most jobs aren't at google or microsoft. They are corporate coding jobs. And just because you can solve a logic/programming problem doesn't mean you can solve complex business problems. These are the problems I face day to day.
Toggle Commented Feb 22, 2010 on The Non-Programming Programmer at Coding Horror
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Feb 22, 2010