Better Programmer Interviews

One of my former co-workers wrote some of his thoughts on crappy interview questions as well as some advice on improving the situation. My latest job was the first time I had to write code during the interview. It was interesting although I think the problem was a bit trivial. The thing I liked about it was that it started with an OOAD design question about a specific problem and then segued into you coding your solution. It was kind of a nice "eat your own design dog food while I watch" moment.

However, when I read the post I mentioned above it occurred to me that you might be able to use open source projects to improve on this a bit. The idea I had was to use an open source library on which you depend and have the interviewee either address a bug or add a feature that you've wanted. This can easily be a take home type of question as well. The plus is you get to do a code review on their submission and get a feature you want. The open source software community benefits as well. It's just wins all around, baby!

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