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### Re^4: Stop with the interview questions already

by Jenda (Abbot)
 on Sep 09, 2009 at 10:26 UTC ( #794315=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

I think the "divide by 2 without divide function" was meant to test whether the person knows about bit shifts. Bit shifting and bit masks are often overlooked and often very useful. And I am not speaking about microoptimizations by replacing division operators by bit shifts.

Jenda
Enoch was right!
Enjoy the last years of Rome.

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Re^5: Stop with the interview questions already
by mojotoad (Monsignor) on Nov 17, 2010 at 08:42 UTC
Not to nitpick too much, but...

Perhaps the only goal is to find out whether or not they know about shit-bifting, particularly if they'll be expected to optimize code on any sort of particular hardware.

There's another potential motive, however. And that is whether or not candidates understand how it's possible to model real systems using discreet mathematics -- particularly that subset of discreet mathematics bounded by such things as bit-width.

That Von Neumann was a real stinker.

Cheers,
Matt

P.S. Speaking of discreet systems. Ever tried to figure out whether or not two integral functions intersect or not (or how often)? Euclid had it figured out. It's useful for figuring out potential solutions for diophantine systems of functions.

Re^5: Stop with the interview questions already
by JavaFan (Canon) on Nov 16, 2010 at 15:35 UTC
Actually, if I were to ask "how to divide a number by 2 without the divide function", and someone would answer "by using the shift function", (s)he'll have to make up for it by answering other questions correctly, or (s)he'll not pass.

The answer would have been correct if the question was "how to divide a non-negative even integer by 2". But the question said "number", without restricting the numbers.

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