“How would you update 10,000 servers located on the moon?”
This was actually the question asked of me when I interviewed with Google. I’m not sure if the point was to figure out exactly what methods would work, or just to make the interviewer feel smugly superior. Either way, I hate these kind of pointless questions. Read on if you do too.
If you are new to interviewing developers, or you are a non-developer (notice how I spelled muggle there? N-O-N-D-E-V-L-O-P-E-R) tasked with interviewing a developer, you may resort to Google to help you find top notch interview questions. Put down the browser and step away form the keyboard before you are convinced that the best way to interview a developer it to have them write a “Bubble Sort” on a white board.
Lucky for you, Junade Ali has compiled a good starter list of questions for your consideration in a blog post creatively titled “PHP Software Engineer/Developer Interview Questions”. As Junade is a developer, they are actually qualified to judge whether these are good questions or not. Also, there are enough for you to be able to pick a few and not have to use them all. (Hit, pick at random, if we ALL use the first 5 then developers will simply memorize the answers to those and not bother memorizing the answers tot he rest of them0
Here’s a quick taste to get you interested. If you want more, click on through and read the entire list.
Over the previous few years I’ve been involved in many development interviews; mainly as the interviewer but occasionally as the interviewee. Alongside this, through the wider PHP Community, I’ve heard some real disaster stories when it comes to poor interviews. From the whole interviewing team entirely lacking development knowledge to engineers being accidentally hired as a result of poor internal process – in some companies, I’ve even seen interviews where the whole process is a sales process due to them being unable to hire developers as a result of serious internal corporate issues or simply offering too low of a salary for the skill set they require.
Go take a look, some of the questions are pretty good.
FTR, my answer to the stupid Google question involved a Soyuz rocket and a USB stick. I did not get the job.