World-writable memory on Samsung Android phones
Posted Dec 18, 2012 1:36 UTC (Tue) by nix
In reply to: World-writable memory on Samsung Android phones
Parent article: World-writable memory on Samsung Android phones
Companies that don't make you write code in interview and don't pre-screen for ability end up with a head count of "programmers" you wouldn't trust to write Hello World.
This is right, but unfortunately fixing it is hard. Pre-screening for ability means that people have to spend ages in crappy jobs filled with nine-to-fivers while getting enough *real* work done on the side that they can pass a pre-screen. Writing code in interviews is an abomination, though it is possible that I'm only saying this because it discriminates against, well, me (I can't think under extreme stress, I don't think very fast, and I have an apparently permanent interview phobia: combine these and I will always
ignominiously fail any interview with a coding component).
It is certainly true that writing code in interviews says almost nothing useful about the candidate other than that he's not a total incompetent: it certainly can't determine if the code he writes is maintainable, efficient, well-documented, or has almost any other desirable property. Given that it also discriminates against some competent people, and that the set of people discriminated against includes me, I don't think I can approve.
I don't know of any way to interview programmers which actually guarantees that you won't get a lemon, or even filters out most of the lemons. "No agencies, personal recommendation only" might well work, but is terribly discriminatory, since it amounts to hiring people because of who their friends are. (Nonetheless, it can work, and is, to be honest, probably the predominant hiring mechanism almost everywhere that isn't growing so fast that it can't rely on just this mechanism or doesn't have legal requirements to use some more open scheme.)
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