Category Archives: m3talink

M3talinks For 05/23/2011

  • The most obvious way to improve your coding is to write more code. Everybody knows that. However, another activity which I guarantee will improve your coding is the complete opposite of writing. I will state this as plainly as I possibly can:

    If you want to dramatically increase your programming skills you need to be reading other people’s code.

    tags: Coding improve Programming advice

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

M3talinks For 05/11/2011

  • Thank you for writing such a heartfelt critique of the Fizzbuzz screening question. I’m not writing to argue with your observations: I think we both agree with your points.

    tags: programming interview development career coding critique

  • Here’s a perfect example of how the computer field is broken:

    In a post at Coding Horror, based on earlier posts at Imran on Tech and Raganwald, the author parrots what the others state, that programmers can’t program. With lots of exclamation points.

    Why make such a breathtakingly grandiose claim? Because of what happens in interviews. It would seem that the originator of this newest fooflah created a series a tests given during the interview process and found:

    tags: programming interview development career coding critique

  • Between Reginald, Dan, and Imran, I’m starting to get a little worried. I’m more than willing to cut freshly minted software developers slack at the beginning of their career. Everybody has to start somewhere. But I am disturbed and appalled that any so-called programmer would apply for a job without being able to write the simplest of programs

    tags: programming interview development career coding

  • I’ve hired dozens of C/C++ programmers (mostly at the entry level). To do that, I had to interview hundreds of candidates. Many of them were woefully poorly prepared for the interview. This page is my attempt to help budding software engineers get and pass programming interviews.

    tags: programming interview career developers

  • One of the nice things about using a tiny problem is that anyone who has written actual code in the last six months will solve it in less than ten minutes. This is good because (a) it leaves more time for talking about important things, and (b) if the candidate can’t solve the problem you will find out right away and save yourself a lot of grief.

    tags: fizzbuzz programming developers interview

  • I hear this from almost every software company. “We hire the top 1% or less,” they all say.

    Could they all be hiring the top 1%? Where are all the other 99%? General Motors?

    I had an insight the other day.

    Quiz: If you get 200 resumes, and you hire 1 person, are you hiring the top 0.5% of software developers?

    “No,” you say, “your screening process is unlikely to find the best person out of 200.”

    Agreed. OK. Let’s say you had a magical screening process that actually allowed you to find the “best” person.

    “No,” you say, “people are good at different things. There’s no absolute, forced ranking of developers that makes sense.”

    Agreed. Let’s simplify for the moment and assume that all software developers in the world could be ranked in absolute order of skill, and that you had a magical screening process that found the “best” person from any field.

    Now, when you get those 200 resumes, and hire the best person from the top 200, does that mean you’re hiring the top 0.5%?


    No. You’re not. Think about what happens to the other 199 that you didn’t hire.

    tags: software programming developers interview

  • After a fair bit of trial and error I’ve come to discover that people who struggle to code don’t just struggle on big problems, or even smallish problems (i.e. write a implementation of a linked list). They struggle with tiny problems.

    So I set out to develop questions that can identify this kind of developer and came up with a class of questions I call “FizzBuzz Questions” named after a game children often play (or are made to play) in schools in the UK.

    tags: fizzbuzz developers programming interview

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

M3talinks For 05/10/2011

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

M3talinks For 05/06/2011

  • You are not a Software Engineer. You do not build skyscrapers. You do not build bridges.

    You grow gardens.

    You are a Software Gardener.

    Do you try to plan your gardens in such detail that you know where each leaf will be positioned before you plant a single seed? Do people expect estimates (or are they promises in your organisation?) on exactly how many flowers will have bloomed in one years time? Do you have a bonus tied to that? Things that would be perfectly reasonable to plan for a skyscraper seem a little ridiculous when you are talking about a garden.

    tags: web development coding programming

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

M3talinks For 05/03/2011

  • Ah source control, if there’s a more essential tool which indiscriminately spans programming languages without favour, I’m yet to see it. It’s an essential component of how so many of us work; the lifeblood of many development teams, if you like. So why do we often get it so wrong? Why are some of the really core, fundamentals of version control systems often so poorly understood?

    I boil it down to 10 practices – or “commandments” if you like – which often break down or are not properly understand to begin with. These are all relevant to version control products of all types and programming languages of all flavours. I’ll pick some examples from Subversion and .NET but they’re broadly applicable to other technologies.

    tags: source control coding best practices

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

M3talinks For 04/15/2011

  • CoffeeScript is a little language that compiles into JavaScript. Underneath all of those embarrassing braces and semicolons, JavaScript has always had a gorgeous object model at its heart. CoffeeScript is an attempt to expose the good parts of JavaScript in a simple way.

    The golden rule of CoffeeScript is: “It’s just JavaScript”. The code compiles one-to-one into the equivalent JS, and there is no interpretation at runtime. You can use any existing JavaScript library seamlessly (and vice-versa). The compiled output is readable and pretty-printed, passes through JavaScript Lint without warnings, will work in every JavaScript implementation, and tends to run as fast or faster than the equivalent handwritten JavaScript.

    tags: javascript coffeescript programming js


    tags: creativity Inspiration advice productivity writing

    Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

    M3talinks For 04/12/2011

    • Impact is a JavaScript Game Engine that allows you to develop HTML5 Games in no time. Games created with Impact require no browser plugins or any software installations – just a modern browser that supports the Canvas tag.

      tags: html5 javascript game framework engine

    • KiTTY is a fork from version 0.60 (build 20100914) of PuTTY, the best telnet / SSH client in the world.
      KiTTY is only designed for the Microsoft Windows platform. For more information about the original software, or pre-compiled binaries on other systems, you can go to the Simon Tatham PuTTY page.

      KiTTY has all the features from the original software, and adds many others as described below:

      tags: putty kitty windows terminal

    Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.