[FoRK] which film first?

Stephen D. Williams sdw at lig.net
Sun Jun 3 21:46:44 PDT 2012

On 6/3/12 5:54 PM, Joseph S. Barrera III wrote:
> On 6/3/2012 5:42 PM, Stephen Williams wrote:
>> C would be the ultimate geek / marines / WWII / cryptocryptothriller.  But would kids switch to encrypted messages using decks of 
>> cards to pass notes in class?? 
> They are too lazy. They will just do:
> http://chronicle.com/article/Online-Courses-Can-Offer-Easy/132093/

Sad.  But even with in-person universities, you can only trust class achievement when you have specific knowledge of a school, 
professor, and class.  I've interviewed plenty of graduates who were unimpressive, even with a healthy allowance for inexperience.  
Online classes are fantastic for learners, not necessarily for checkoffs.

> My wife is a public school teacher and cell-phone-pictures of tests are rampant... If you are a teacher, you can never reuse a 
> test (or any of its questions) if you actually want to teach knowledge instead of just proficiency at cheating.
> No wonder job interviews are so hellish these days. Hiring companies can't trust a single thing written down on paper.
> I personally hired an intern in my last weeks at IBM. Just a STELLAR record on paper. He was completely unable to make the most 
> trivial changes in a python program I wrote. I even interviewed him beforehand and asked him lots of challenging questions. My 
> wife believes he got someone else to do the phone interview... I think she may be right.
> Never trust anyone under 30.

Finding and interviewing people for demanding positions wears you out, or at least eats all available time.  It's surprising how 
many people seem to have little depth.  Programming quizzes are good, but somewhat patchy: It is too easy to think something you 
know is obvious when it isn't.

My favorite way to find the level of sophistication of a developer is to ask: Describe the most complex or difficult problem you 
solved?  Algorithm you implemented?  Data structure that you implemented or assembled?

And then you find a rock star and get out-bid by the big guys (interesting how far they will go), or people don't get what a startup 
is for and shy away.  Fun.

Hired a very specialized guy right now though.  Now, if I could find a mobile GPU (and DSP & ISP) algorithmic imaging guy who 
obsesses about optimization I'd be happy.

> - Joe


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