Discussion Software Engineering Interviews


Hi all, I've been inactive here for a while, hope you're all doing well.

I'm a master's student in computer science, but not because I particularly want to be. I was having a lot of difficulty in the software engineering job market when I only had my bachelor's degree, despite having a good GPA and some personal projects.

I'm no longer convinced that the second degree alone will be enough to make the difference. I've had several experiences where older engineers (think 50-ish year olds that live inside their Linux boxes) I was interviewing with would try to test me. I think these folks might have a bit of confirmation bias. They want to tease out any hint of irresponsibility or unwillingness to accept criticism that they can. And they see what they want to see in me, however slight or great the evidence for that might be.

So what can I do as a - relatively - young person to dispel these notions? What "soft skills" can I best make use of? I'm doing everything I can to work on whatever personality flaws I may have. I'm also trying to appear/act older to better relate to these types of people.


I remember my first interview after getting such a degree with a 3.2 GPA. (Not the greatest but for me was exceptionally well done as I more or less failed all the way through high school.)

The interview It was rough. The interviewee moved really quick and started at the very top of list (Least common knowledge) and worked all the way down to the very basic question: The difference between the two signals digital and analog. I got one right for sure! In the end he didn't explain which ones I got right and wrong but he was kind enough to explain all the answers and where to find more about them. I guess that was his way of saying "Better luck next time".

It was later that I had discovered that one of friends fathers did the EXACT same system and it was explained to me why...the exact points will depend on the company. Obviously there has to be some some basic knowledge that you must have to present yourself. Generally, they want to know how you would arrive to an answer not necessarily get it correct the first time as most company's fail at this anyway. Don't be afraid to ask questions during the interview, but not about basic things you should know just clarifying questions or give two answers. Above ALL. be yourself. Maybe what that company needs is a fresh head. That would would be you!

I will add that I currently work with those type of persons and while they have their own set ways generally by tradition and memory...as long as the job gets done correctly and efficiently do your own thing.

EDIT: They didnt ask the famous tic tac toe question did they?


They did not ask that question, but I'd feel comfortable answering it.

I did not do too badly on technical sections, as far as I know.


I agree as an old timer. Basic knowledge is great, but you want someone that thinks on their feet and isn't afraid of asking questions. No one wants to develop with the guy that thinks he is gods gift and is too good to ask a follow question. If you have a few projects that relate to the type of project you would be working on at that company I would think you are golden. It may depend on the area, but I never needed the masters.