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Please I Need Help to solve these general interview questions

Posted on 2007-03-29
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Describe the most successful project you've worked on.  What were the key ingredients to its success?  
Well if I say I worked in a C# project and I am not sure what should I put for key ingredients ..does it mean
best functional specifications, well design, good coding style, constant communications among developers and rapid testing. Please help...

Described the least successful project?  Is there any thing you could have done to make it more successful?


What do you see changing in the software and website development industry in the next 2 - 3 years?
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Question by:bobby_simon
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mrwad99 earned 500 total points
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I am surprised that this has had no comments so far, but here is my few pence worth:

>> Describe the most successful project you've worked on

Only you can do that.

>> What were the key ingredients to its success?

You can talk about both the key components of the code, such as things like use design patterns/other elegant coding practices, excellent commenting of the code allowing everyone to understand what is going on etc.  You can then talk about concepts such as excellent teamwork (including good communication), a confident, competent leader (someone who had the guts to state what needed to be done and by whom) - if you had one :) - and general organisation of the resources you had available.  Testing is of course a key component, as you mention, but this should be done by testers, not the developers, as, I am sure you will appreciate, each of the two have their strengths and weaknesses and are best suited to their chosen occupation.

You hence seem to have the right idea with the comments in your question.

>> Described the least successful project?  Is there any thing you could have done to make it more successful?

That is a true classic question.  The interviewer wants to see that you can acknowledge mistakes and that you can learn from them, so never say "there is nothing I could have done to make it more successful" :o)  You need to mention quickly the source of the problem.  

* Was it bad teamwork?  In which case you could mention the exact problem: did you have a conflict of ideas that could not be resolved?  Or did you just not get on with the other people in your team?  If you did not get on with your team, I would not state that, as it makes it seem like you cannot work with people you don't like (which may be true, but it will make you unemployable: the employer cannot guarantee that you will like who you work with, and will not be willing to jeopardise a project just because you don't like someone).  

* Was it bad leadership?  If you were the leader, don't mention this :o)  Otherwise, what was wrong with the leadership?  Bad organisation?  Wrong coding practices?  Conflict of ideas?

* Did you use wrong coding practices, eg no design patterns?  This is a good one, as you can then proceed to say that you realised this after and studied design patterns, and are now a master of them :) (as long as you are).  Or did you try and attempt the project in a language that you were too new to?  Again, if this is the case, you can say that you did not know enough about the language, but do now :) (as long as you do, and as long as the language is relevant to the prosepective employer).

>> What do you see changing in the software and website development industry in the next 2 - 3 years?

Another classic question.  You need to research the latest web development technologies (I am not a web programmer, but am aware of things like AJAX etc).  I do believe that more apps are having a web based front end, which means ulimately fixing bugs is easier, as you don't need to ship patches to customers - all the work is done at the developers end when a problem arises, and the customers get the result with no work on their part.  The software industry in general is changing rapidly.  The introduction of Windows Vista means programmers have a lot more functionality available to them (but has also introduced a lot of problems with older code - I know :) ).  More and more apps are being developed using RAD (rapid application development) through IDEs (Integrated Development Environments) like Visual Studio.  As more functionality is packed into these IDEs, the programmer essentially has to do less work, meaning more time can be spent on asethetic aspects like interfaces.  Building a web site that is database driven is infinitely easier now in VS 2005, than was ever the case before.

In general, just mention that new development tools are making development faster, easier and more efficient.  What used to take a team of developers can now be accomplished by just one.

Anyway, don't just blurb this out at interview without considering it first.  It is my opinion, that is all.

Good luck :)
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