Quite recently, I added a comment in my latest article about the usage of one-liners in coding interviews and that spurred other threads like a Lernean hydra.
What's going on there? Is there is something hidden beyond those words really?
Here is my take on Technical Interviews for some opinions and discuss how broken they are really.
Disclaimer : I'm not an interviewer and I haven't interviewed people before so my opinions are biased. I've done quite a few interviews though to form what I say here.
Now they shouldn't hire you. Just because you did something like that, it doesn't mean anything. It won't even dent a piece of their hair. You might only get an easier access to a first interview, but after that you are just to be evaluated as a normal candidate.
Think of this in a different way. They have a reputation to hold. How fair is this to be compared with someone who doesn't even have a Github profile? You get the easy ride, but they have to hustle their way through. Nope back to the line mister.
I was in an interview and I was asked to implement a build-in algorithm like
String.reverse without using any standard library methods or specific functions. They shouldn't been doing that because we shouldn't re-implement the wheel
Yes we shouldn't re-implement the wheel. But we shouldn't also be surprised to know that we don't really write production code in technical interviews because if we did then there is definitely something wrong there. The interviewer again tries to test the waters by giving you constraints and asking a way to overcome the problem. Again they want to see problem solving skills and how you communicate. They don't really care if you solve it or not but how you get there. Or they are not satisfied with your solution and they want additional coding signals.
At the end, if they are unsure about you, if you do not ask enough questions, or you are cocky and condescending they will pick this up and it will count negatively against you. What's so wrong about asking for more details anyway if you know how to do it? They don't know you nor your skills - in fact no one knows you really until proven otherwise - so keep yourself together and try to tackle it.
What was so absurd anyway? They can ask whatever they want. The real question is what are you going to do about it? Are you going to ask questions to get some hints and try to implement it or just lift your hands up. This is an opportunity to at least showcase your problem solving skills which is what's important.
I once, was asked for some obscure feature in a language does that I can look up in 30 seconds and get the answer to
This is a test to check how much you know and how you can explain the details. If you don't know you should be honest and explain your position. Don't be cocky or arrogant, just state the truth. If they want some specific answer you can just ask whether they use this feature in production so you can learn more about it. Or probably the interviewer is more arrogant than you or they want just to check your reaction.
I think the most important part of the interview is how you communicate. You would argue that technical skill is the most dominating factor here but that will only get you to 70% with a passing score of 80%. So if you are not able to communicate no matter how good you are in coding you won't pass the next step.