Sunday, November 23, 2014

Post-MakerSquare, Week One: Don't be so apologetic on the job search (plus bonus FizzBuzz)

"So, one note for you," said a mentor, after I went through a mock technical interview, "is: Stop being so apologetic."

Which really might be the centerpiece of why I don't love interviewing. I mean: I love talking to people, I love asking questions, I love answering questions. God help me, I even love coding challenges. Ask me to do FizzBuzz in one line, please!
Sidebar: How to do FizzBuzz in one line:

(1..100).each {|num| num % 3 == 0 && num % 5 == 0 ? (puts "FizzBuzz") : num % 3 == 0 ? (puts "Fizz") : num % 5 == 0 ? (puts "Buzz") : (puts num) } 
It's not pretty--or really all that maintainable--but it works in one line. (Note: tested on; and inspired by a Paul Irish post.)
Let's break it down:
  • 1..100 -- standard Ruby for an inclusive range
  • each -- loop over each element in the array/range and slip it into the following block
  • followed by a cascade of ternary conditionals
    • if it's divisible by 3 and 5, put "FizzBuzz", and if not, then
    • run through the next case (divisible by 3) and if that doesn't work,
    • run the next case (divisible by 5), and if that doesn't work
    • just put the number already
But I don't love selling myself. When I'm discussing my projects and my web dev foundation, it's pretty tempting for me to pick at the issues or the lessons (i.e., the mistakes that I made). Largely that's because of where I am in my career--just beginning, with plenty to learn and a big hunger to learn it. I mean, I really liked the early hackathon project we did, but weeks later, I can see some of the holes there.

Looking at those holes can be very educational and even rewarding. ("Look, ma, I'm learning!") But they don't always make the best interview discussion.

So, dear mentor, I'm going to try to be less apologetic during interviews.

And wouldn't we all rather talk about FizzBuzz anyway?

P.S. For actual information about my job search--well, I'm not going to get into details. Suffice it to say, I'm concentrating on Austin right now, with an eye cast on Chicago; I'm looking primarily for, let's say, middle-end to back-end--anything below HTML/CSS, which I can do, but don't enjoy as much. I've got some leads and had some positive interviews, so I feel OK. But I'll be 100% honest with you: I'd much rather be coding than searching for a job.

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