Mart Raudsepp <> posted,
excerpted below, on  Wed, 06 May 2009 21:16:56 +0300:

> On Wed, 2009-05-06 at 17:25 +0000, Duncan wrote:
>> Christian Faulhammer posted:
>> > recruiters do quite long IRC sessions with the applicant.  Apart from
>> > questions not found in the quiz they want people to elaborate on
>> > answers they made.
>> As others have occasionally noted, the assumption seems to be that
>> developers "do" IRC.
> Are you suggesting that recruiters should do long e-mail exchanges with
> the applicants instead, having no real time conversations, leading to no
> idea about the applicants real knowledge (when there is not much time to
> do research after a question is posed), attitude and so on?

Noting that mail turnaround can be seconds or minutes, particularly when 
needed and arranged beforehand... like say an IRC session might be...

There's a saying that the mark of an expert isn't that he knows 
everything, but that he knows where to look to find it when he needs it.

I'd suggest that applies here.

In the Gentoo development environment, what's so pressing that a few 
hours' delay checking a reference to make sure something's done correctly 
is a problem?  If it's not a problem "on the job", why make it a problem 
"for the interview"?

Basically, I'd argue there's no vital information obtainable by an IRC 
interview that can't be obtained in an email exchange.  There's 
certainly /some/ additional information available in the instant format, 
but I'd argue it isn't vital information given a longer view and a 
history to work with, and in fact, that said additional information is 
quite trivial.

I'd argue that real knowledge and attitude should easily be apparent by 
the time of a serious interview, whether it's via IRC or mail, in any 
case.  As the developer's handbook points out, the first step in the 
process is simply "helping out".  What's the bug submission history?  
Patches?  Sunrise and/or project overlay and/or AT record?  Whether on 
the various devel and project lists or IRC channels, what has been the 
candidate's attitude?  Do they take well suggestions from others, yet are 
able to take their own positions and defend them technically when 
necessary?  Are they able to discern when it's a big deal and when it's 
not?  When they screw up, do they apologize, then work to fix it 
themselves, asking for help when needed, or are they either slacking off 
waiting for someone else to fix their mess, or refusing offered and 
needed (time-wise or technically) help?

Are you saying that history, generally of months if not years[1], is 
easily faked, and that an IRC session is better at detecting such fakes 
than an email exchange of approximate equal depth would be?  If you are, 
I must say I disagree.  I just don't see it.

[1] There's a place for shorter term commitments, see the SoC, bugday, 
simply pitching in with patches or testing, etc, but those aren't Gentoo 

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman

Reply via email to