[JOB] Perl Software Developer and Database programmer

Dirk Koopman djk at tobit.co.uk
Thu Feb 23 12:49:34 GMT 2006

On Thu, 2006-02-23 at 11:20 +0000, Robin Barker wrote:

> Given that we were not given any such information about the type of data 
> that is held in alphas and betas then we cannot ignore the possibility 
> of duplicates. We may also be in the position that the order of the 
> results is also important so the sorted list with a binary search would 
> probably fail for both duplicates and results ordering.

What is interesting about this little problemette is not the various
solutions proffered (including my little piece of perlish whimsy [using
the same name many ways], produced out of boredom) but the fact that
everybody seems to have missed the fact that this was obviously designed
as a thought experiment to see how a candidate's mind works. There is no
'right' answer, because there are no constraints offered - methinks
> -----
> >     foreach my $alpha ( @alphas ) {
> >         foreach my $beta ( @betas ) {
> >             if ( $alpha == $beta ) {
> >                 push @results, $beta;
> >             }
> >         }
> >     }

It seems curious, at least to me, that most of the discussion seems
centred much more on changing the offered problem, rather than actually
offering solutions. 

It reminds me so much of that cartoon where what is wanted is a simple
car tyre swing hanging from a tree branch; then showing the process of
obtaining the "IT" solution in a storyboard. Which, after many
iterations going through various bits of the IT dept, is: cutting the
tree horizontally through the trunk, raising the top half a few feet
with the aid of a "skyhook", hanging the tyre with two ropes, each rope
attached to branches on opposite sides of the trunk with the tyre
swinging in the gap between the top half of the tree and the base.


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