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zgreen

13 posts

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#211604 3-Apr-2017 16:50
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Hi,

 

We're currently advertising for an IT Administrator (jack of all trades role, helpdesk crossed with some sys admin and software dev) in Christchurch for Enatel Ltd.

 

To help speed up filtering the applications, I decided to have a go at putting a puzzle on the ad. There are 3 parts to it and not a single person in 3 weeks has hit the 3rd part, but I have had plenty of applications with incorrect answers.

 

I'm after feedback to see if this is too hard, or alternatively, if you're interested in the role, let me know!

 

The whole idea of it is that the steps / answers aren't obvious off the top of your head, but it shows that you can read the question, google if you have to and then interpret and apply your skills to get the results. I've had other people that don't do this stuff for a living test it and complete it within a minute.

 

The ad states that you need to be familiar with C# and that part of the role is dealing with staff (who may say things in odd ways that you need to be able to convert into their actual request).

 

 

 

/// <summary>For bonus points, include the answer
/// to the question below in your cover letter.
/// <para>I wonder what the TXT record for the return value
/// of puzzle("jobapplication") would show?</para>
/// </summary>
private string puzzle(string question)
{
var answer = "txtrecord.enatel.net";
string s1 = "it";
string company = "www.enatel.net";

if (question.IndexOf(answer[2]) >= 10)
return company.Replace(company.Substring(0, s1.Length + 1),
question.Substring(0, company.IndexOf('\x6C')/3));

Console.WriteLine(answer);

return s1 + company.Substring(3);
}


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gehenna
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  #1754891 3-Apr-2017 16:55
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If you're looking for a generalist you might be barking up the wrong tree.  Not knowing coding I can't say if the puzzle is hard or easy, but I can say there's plenty of other jobs out there to apply for that don't make you jump through hoops - at least until interview stage.  Maybe you need to modify your expectations a bit, especially for the level of person you want.


zgreen

13 posts

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  #1754894 3-Apr-2017 17:01
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gehenna:

 

If you're looking for a generalist you might be barking up the wrong tree.  Not knowing coding I can't say if the puzzle is hard or easy, but I can say there's plenty of other jobs out there to apply for that don't make you jump through hoops - at least until interview stage.  Maybe you need to modify your expectations a bit, especially for the level of person you want.

 

 

 

 

True, but you can literally copy and paste that into an editor and run it to get the answer. I get your point though. Last time we hired for this role, testing was given at the interview stage but we found that most people failed even simple code examples.


djtOtago
812 posts

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  #1754897 3-Apr-2017 17:06
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job.enatel.net

 

Not too hard, Unless I got it wrong, then it is very hard :)

 

 




zgreen

13 posts

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  #1754899 3-Apr-2017 17:10
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djtOtago:

 

job.enatel.net

 

Not too hard, Unless I got it wrong, then it is very hard :)

 

 

You're half way there, correct return value but not what the question actually asked. Guess maybe that part is too subtle?


tchart
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  #1754901 3-Apr-2017 17:13
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While I'm not a developer I am a proficient code writer. My job deals with several languages including C#, Java and Python. I also know VB and C++.

 

That question is pretty badly coded. I think I found the answer but surely there are better ways to filter out people? Even an experienced coder will get things wrong but the ability to diagnose and fix is the true indicator of a good developer.

 

 


mentalinc
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  #1754904 3-Apr-2017 17:17
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My attempt....

 

Wants you to find the "t"

 

t is the 10th char in jobapplication

 

first if is true, therefore return

 

return company.Replace(company.Substring(0, s1.Length + 1),  question.Substring(0, company.IndexOf('\x6C')/3));

 

which works out to be

 

return company.Replace(company.Substring(0, 3),  question.Substring(0, company.IndexOf('l'));

 

return company.Replace(company.Substring(0, 3),  question.Substring(0, 10);

 

so replace the www with question.Substring(0, 10)

 

question.Substring(0, 10) = jobapplicat

 

jobapplicat.enatel.net

 

 

 

Keen to know if wrong and what the issue was, but this has also just given anyone the ability google any part of the code answers so no longer usefil filter...

 

Forgot to /3 so above it wrong... 

 

 

 

Don't want a job but requires

 

  • coding skills (to read the code and process it)
  • ability to convert hex to ASCII (google it)
  • otherwise its simple string operations...




CPU: AMD 5900x | RAM: GSKILL Trident Z Neo RGB F4-3600C16D-32GTZNC-32-GB | MB:  Asus X570-E | GFX: EVGA FTW3 Ultra RTX 3080Ti| Monitor: LG 27GL850-B 2560x1440

 

 


dryburn
418 posts

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  #1754905 3-Apr-2017 17:18
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enatel.net




zgreen

13 posts

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  #1754906 3-Apr-2017 17:19
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tchart:

 

While I'm not a developer I am a proficient code writer. My job deals with several languages including C#, Java and Python. I also know VB and C++.

 

That question is pretty badly coded. I think I found the answer but surely there are better ways to filter out people? Even an experienced coder will get things wrong but the ability to diagnose and fix is the true indicator of a good developer.

 

Thanks, and I appreciate that. If I had just made it return company.Replace("www", question.Substring(0,3)) it would have been pretty obvious. I actually wanted people to chuck it into VS or dotnetfiddle and run it rather than trying to work it out by hand even though you could if you wanted to.


ubergeeknz
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  #1754907 3-Apr-2017 17:19
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I got it, but the two parts of it don't make a lot of sense together (why am I feeding the output from a random snippet of code into a DNS query).  Also the code is a bit obfuscated, or looks it to me, then I am not a C# dev.

 

I can see why people would have a hard time with it.


djtOtago
812 posts

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  #1754911 3-Apr-2017 17:21
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That's why I'm a programmer and not a network person.

 

But you are correct. I read the code but not the question. To answer it I copied the code into a text editor and re formatted it to make it easier for me to read and understand.

 

 

 

 


zgreen

13 posts

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  #1754912 3-Apr-2017 17:22
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mentalinc:t is the 10th char in jobapplication
Index 9, as numbering starts at 0.

 

mentalinc: return company.Replace(company.Substring(0, 3),  question.Substring(0, company.IndexOf('l'));
you dropped the /3, which is index 9, divided by 3 = 3.

 

 

 

Also question asks for the TXT record (I don't assume people applying for this job will know what that is, but google tells you pretty quickly).


zgreen

13 posts

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  #1754913 3-Apr-2017 17:24
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ubergeeknz:

 

I got it, but the two parts of it don't make a lot of sense together (why am I feeding the output from a random snippet of code into a DNS query).  Also the code is a bit obfuscated, or looks it to me, then I am not a C# dev.

 

I can see why people would have a hard time with it.

 

 

 

 

Reason for the DNS query is I wanted to pick something people would think I don't know what that is, but let me google it and see if I can apply what I read to this situation. I think that is the bit that everyone is struggling with and maybe that's what I have to remove.


freitasm
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  #1754924 3-Apr-2017 17:44
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Well done! Visit https://[removed].enatel.net




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zgreen

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  #1754925 3-Apr-2017 17:45
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freitasm: Well done! Visit https://[removed].enatel.net


Excellent! That is one of my 2 valid answers, and probably the correct one given the wording :)


freitasm
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  #1754928 3-Apr-2017 17:47
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Removed the answer.

But yes, an IT Admin help desk may know about DNS but not necessarily programming. A generalist is usually just that.




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