That's what she said !

Coding screen practice

Any good sites for practicing the types of problems given on coding screens?

Bonus points for interactive sites where you can run and test the solutions.
Permalink NPR 
December 4th, 2017 10:12am
https://www.hackerrank.com
Permalink Stupid guy 
December 4th, 2017 10:20am
There's a Udemy course that covers this recommended by 'Coding Phase' - I don't remember the exact title, when I remember I'll come back.
Permalink Zaq 
December 4th, 2017 10:28am
In my last job search, I was usually rejected BEFORE the technical screen.

I did some Hackerrank/etc.  When they do forward me my score, it's usually 80th-90th percentile, but they say "We only interview the top 2%".

You're judged by things like runtime performance and performance against mystery test cases.  It's hard to judge the mystery test cases on a poorly worded problem.
Permalink FSK 
December 4th, 2017 6:38pm
> Any good sites for practicing the types of problems given on coding screens?

You can practice on leaked questions.

Here's Google.

https://careercup.com/page?pid=google-interview-questions

They also have Amazon, Microsoft and others.

They usually retire questions that get leaked though, so you can't cheat this way.

Although if you end up getting a question that you've practiced before, just fucking tell the interviewer.  It's really obvious and then you get sent home early and stamped No Hire: EVER for being a bullshitter.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
December 4th, 2017 7:04pm
https://youtu.be/2K2Rf0RTi_E
Permalink Zaq 
December 4th, 2017 7:07pm
"In my last job search, I was usually rejected BEFORE the technical screen."

Hmm, that is not uncommon. It's like a sales funnel...In go leads, they become qualified as prospects, then customers.

My callback rate seems fairly low, too. Actually, I just had an onsite cancelled because they decided I wouldn't be a good fit and don't want to waste my time. Why didn't they tell me that before?
Permalink NPR 
December 4th, 2017 7:13pm
At least they canceled. Some teams don’t know what they want and are just interviewing people, trying to decide what they want along the way
Permalink Stupid guy 
December 4th, 2017 8:10pm
>Hmm, that is not uncommon. It's like a sales funnel...In go leads, they become qualified as prospects, then customers.

If you're rejecting qualified people without even a phone interview, you don't get to complain "There's a shortage of competent workers."  And these were jobs that matched my resume keywords.

>At least they canceled. Some teams don’t know what they want and are just interviewing people, trying to decide what they want along the way

I had that happen to me more than once.  I asked the guy what he was looking for.  He gave me a project manager description instead of a programmer description.  I told him that he should be hiring a project manager and not a programmer.  A few weeks later I saw the company reposting a project manager ad.  I should have charged a $10k consulting fee.

There's also the people who want free consulting as an interview test.  Two of my favorites:

"Write a program that connects to Interactive Brokers and executes VWAP trades."

"Write a program that scrapes date from website X and imports it into our website."
Permalink FSK 
December 4th, 2017 8:41pm
> If you're rejecting qualified people without even a phone interview, you don't get to complain "There's a shortage of competent workers."  And these were jobs that matched my resume keywords.

Here.  Let me explain.

HR puts people in the pipeline after an initial screening: eligible to work in the US? can communicate in English? resume matches all of the buzzwords? etc.

Sometimes they can figure all of this out from what you submitted.  Other times they call you to get more information.

Great, now you're in the pipeline.  Now an actual technical person looks at it and decides if your resume speaks to the required skills or not.  They may also Google you and see if anything disturbing comes up.

That's why companies look confused about this stuff at times.

If you can think of a better process please share.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
December 5th, 2017 11:26am
My recommendation is to be less picky.  Interview people who ate switching tech stacks or who have non-perfect pedigrees.
Permalink FSK 
December 5th, 2017 3:26pm
There is something to be said for the 'Moneyball' approach.
Permalink Zaq 
December 5th, 2017 3:49pm
> My recommendation is to be less picky.  Interview people who ate switching tech stacks or who have non-perfect pedigrees.

Small companies usually can't afford to hire people that need significant ramp up time in their particular stack of whatever bullshit they picked after seeing it flash by on HN.

Larger companies like Google don't give a shit and judge you more by your performance on the interview, since their tech stack is in-house and it's going to take you six months to figure it out anyway.

Not sure what you mean by pedigree.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
December 5th, 2017 4:16pm
"If you can think of a better process please share."

I do absolutely no hiring like what you describe. All my developers I approached recruited personally. I knew about them from things like networking and being aware of what is going on in the field.

For non-development staff I hire through personal recommendations. Need a janitor, one of the other employees has an aunt that needs a job. Need a customer service person, my neighbor's daughter graduated college and needs a job and speaks perfect english. Then she has a friend, that's the next hire.

I've never advertised for a position. I also don't care about resumes. People bring them, but for non-development I don't care, either they do a good job and stay or they don't and they leave. For development I don't need a resume because I know how the person codes before I approach them.
Permalink Scott 
December 5th, 2017 5:44pm
In addition to resumes I don't care about college either. With some small exceptions. If you have a PhD or an Associates that is bad. Those are terrible degrees to have for a developer position and are a very strong indicator of total incompetence. A Bachelors degree in Physics, Astronomy, Philosophy, Linguistics or EE are all good things. A Bachelors in CS somewhat less so. CS degreers are a combination of aspie white guys that have no clue about customers or usability, and asian guys that only got the degree because their mother told them there was good jobs there.

The best degrees for developers are Philosophy and Physics. Both these degrees always have experience coding and they are not social losers but are usually cool well rounded people.
Permalink Scott 
December 5th, 2017 5:49pm
>small companies can't afford ramp-up time

They also can't afford:

- leaving a position open for months while they hold out for the perfect candidate

- paying market rates for someone who already has "hot" skills

- hiring someone who has the right experience on paper, but can't get the job done
Permalink FSK 
December 5th, 2017 6:57pm
> They also can't afford:

> - leaving a position open for months while they hold out for the perfect candidate

That might be preferable, actually.

> - paying market rates for someone who already has "hot" skills

Not always true.

> - hiring someone who has the right experience on paper, but can't get the job done

This is what technical interviews are for.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
December 6th, 2017 12:32am

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