I shouldn’t be posting..

Posted by | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 06-01-2012

..because I should be doing the programming assignment/test that DICE sent me… *PANIC*

Also why the fuck isn’t there a “mood” icon for shitting-yourself-in-terror?

Cross-posted from my Google+

How do you cope with interview and test stress?
I ask as it’s currently driving me up the wall. I’ll explain shall I?

Having successfully applied and done the usual large-corporation recruiter stuff I got an email direct from the studio I’m interested in saying: “Make us a clone of game X to these specs as your programming assignment… hear from you in 4 or 5 days, kthnxbye” – straight to the point and the game to make is pretty simple, they even supply a simple library… really simple, it opens and window and draws sprites that it also loads. That’s it.

This is where I start to worry. How good does my code have to be? is this just a “can he type?” level of test or when they open my code files must the ambrosia of the gods pour forth from their monitors? Because if it’s the latter then I’m roundly fuXX0red!

The kind of code I write is must closer to the custard-of-Satan at times if I’m honest with you all. It’s not that I can’t write good solid code (I think) but that I’m resolutely entrenched in the habit of writing code that’s “good enough”. Sometimes “good enough” code is perfect and succinct, at other times it causes “The Coen” to hunt through everything I’ve ever writing cursing my name and breaks the DLC (sorry Rik).

So where do I aim my code for a test done in my spare time, whilst finding my feet at a new job for another startup. Doing it all to “Gods Ambrosia” standard isn’t feasible in that timeframe, but “Satan’s Surly Custard” sure as shit won’t get me the job.

How much complexity do I show off? How much would be too much? Do I go the complex route to show I know it? Or do I par everything back to basics so they can see that I’m not an architecture astronaut (I HATE those guys)?

This isn’t actually a plea for advice as I’m just going to write the damned code however I please just like I would for any other job. If they like it then “yay” if not then I’ll get exceedingly drunk and wee myself whilst crying…

… what I really want to know, is how do you keep yourself going when you’re anxiety at all of the above weighs in on your more rational brain?

Comments posted (2))

  1. Mix it up and comment thoroughly to say that’s what you’re doing and what your thought process is. Show that you’re aware of the need to adopt different standards for different purposes.

    “I’m going to code the bulk of the code as tidily and as cleanly as I can. I’m going to take the x section and sacrifice tidy with the aim of being as efficient as I can.” And then label the other bit: “I’m going to code this part in a more complex manner for the sake of efficiency.”

  2. write it the way you would write it. Look at it this way – if you write code you hate and they give you the job, then you’ll be forced to continue writing code you hate. If you write code you like and they give you the job, then you will be able to continue doing so. Just make sure it has plenty comments. comments are always good. The more complicated the code, the more you comment it (like in assembler where you should comment every single damn line)