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Aaron N. Tubbs

Dragon chaser.

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Before I begin:

  1. Programming interviews are a topic near and dear to my heart; they’re more art than science, and I still am not happy with the ones I give, but I have strong opinions on them, and that’s likely to impact my opinions that follow.
  2. Every “Wrox” book I’ve ever seen, I’ve hated before I even opened the cover. Then I hated it even more. My belief is that they’re in the same league as Sam’s, Complete Idiot’s Guide, and For Dummies book.

Anyhow, Programming Interviews Exposed is ostensibly a book on, well, I guess what to expect in programming interviews. The coverage is very shallow, spotty, and in some cases incorrect. To its credit, it does represent the bare minimum of conversational fluency in certain topics, but I don’t think it goes into enough detail to be particularly useful in any of them. It devotes far more pages to example resumes than anything else.

On one hand, I’d like for every person that interviews with me to read this book. On the other hand, there are far better books to read that talk about real programming skills, rather than prep for an interview, like Programming Pearls. It’s sort of like the problem of college — you can learn underlying material, or you can study for the exam. Any sufficiently spontaneous interview is going to cut through the material in this book in short order.

3/10.