Igor Bubelov About Blog Photos

Software Engineering Interviews

August 10, 2020

I had an odd job this month which was in essence an attempt to find a good Android developer for a company I know very little about. It still amazes me that there is almost no correlation between what people write about in their CVs and what they really know.

I’m not a big fan or preparing for interviews, it sounds artificial, and it really is. Needless to say that it doesn’t show anything useful. Most of the time, it’s fine not to know something. We can’t have an expert knowledge in every possible domain and no one should expect that from someone else. It seems pretty obvious, and that’s what CVs help us to solve: people can see what we worked with, which technologies we explored, and it makes total sense to discuss it during the tech interview.

It turns out, it’s still OK to brag about your expertise in networks and know nothing about network timeouts or to be a math major and understand nothing about the basic math concepts. How can a “Kotlin Expert” with many years of experience believe that Kotlin has its own VM? People keep putting stuff they’re unable to reason about in their CVs. It seems like by “knowledge” they mean knowledge of a basic and most typical setup. Anyone can use most of the modern tools and libraries, it doesn’t show expertise, and it’s not relevant.

In my opinion, a real expert in a certain set of technologies should understand how they work and should be able to explain their choice. I’m not sure if it’s too much to ask nowadays.