We have seen the future, and it sucks.

Riddles Have No Place in Job Interviews

21st January 2013

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It’s one thing to ask an open-ended technical question that lends itself to straightforward answers (e.g., “What are some things you could do to minimize the time spent in garbage collection?”). It’s quite another to subject the interviewee to game-show riddles. “Four people want to cross a bridge. They all begin on the same side. You have twelve minutes to get all of them across to the other side. It is night. There is one flashlight. A maximum of two people can cross at one time,” etc.

I have only faced one such interview, and (no doubt as punishment for my sins) accepted their offer; I learned within a month that the guy was a micromanaging asshole. Fortunately it was a contract position so I could bail out without too much damage to my résumé. But it was Hell while it lasted.

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