dennisgorelik: (Default)
Muhammad contacted me on LinkedIn:
===============
M: Hi Dennis,
As one of my connections, I wanted to quickly reach out to see if you have any current or future opportunity for me?
...
I am based in Islamabad Pakistan.
{Long list of buzzwords and self-praise skipped}
D: What's your hourly rate?
M: Hi Dennis, thanks for your response.
I am happy if I can get $40+ /hr. Incase of remote opportunity $20/hr is good.
===============

We chatted on LinkedIn a little about his participation in nTaskManager project.
I pointed out to a misspelling in his resume "Windows Azuer" (which is not a good sign), but he fixed it (which is a good sign) and said "thank you" for that.

I was not able to get answers from Muhammad to my specific technical questions and was considering dropping it, but Muhammad offered to talk on Skype.
So I decided to try and see what would happen. In particular, my goal was to learn how text chat correlates with voice conversation over Skype.
Muhammad proved to be consistent: he could not answer my specific tech questions in text chat, and he could not answer my specific questions in our voice conversation.

Transcript of our voice interview
--------------------
D: Hi Muhammad.
M: Hi Dennis, how are you.
D: Let’s start with question about email that this nTask sends (*1). Did you create this email?
M: Actually, I created this with the team. It was not only my task. I think it was team of 5 persons. I see your screen.
D: So, yes, I’m talking about this email. Did you participate in any way in creating this email.
M: Actually, my participation was only technical: creating technical design, ..., creating technical implementation , ...
D: So, did you do anything about this email. Anything. Any activity. Did you put any work into this email?
M: There are 2 things: one is content and second one is how email is being sent. What I implemented is to send emails. This email template was designed by our designer, and content was designed by the owner of this application. My role was to write code, so this email will be sent.
D: When this code was (*2) ... are you saying you wrote code that was sending this email? Or you are not saying this? Or you did not do it?
M: Sorry, I could not get what you said.
D: Did you write the ... I still cannot understand what you did here. Did you do anything here? Or you actually wrote code for sending this email. Or was it somebody else who was doing it?
M: I was writing the code.
D: You were writing the code. Ok. How many developers were writing code that sends this email?
M: I had one front-end developer...
D: Uh-huh.
M: ... and one SQL guy with me, and I was only backend developer. And the code was written in C#. And we were using Mongo DBs database.
D: So could you explain, in this email, what was the backend work and what was the front-end work, and which part did you do, specifically? In this email.
M: Actually, as a backed it is, actually MVC single-page application. And this is using ...
D: [Interrupting] Ok, now you mention MVC. Single page application. What does it have to do with MVC? Like this email – what does it have to do with MVC?
M: Actually, MVC is the main framework for this.
D: What do you mean? Are you saying you are using MVC in order to create email?
M: No-no-no. Definitely there is an application. It’s a complete architecture. Having multiple ... for database, operations, sending emails...
D: So, we are talking specifically about email. Do you understand it, right? We are talking specifically about sending email. I am asking you specifically about this email. You were mentioning MVC. Why were you mentioning MVC in the context in the email?
M: Sorry, I were talking about overall architecture ...
D: [Interrupting] No, we were not talking about overall architecture. I was talking, specifically, about this email. I am not talking about overall architecture. Did I say “overall architecture”?
M: N ... this specific email – there is nothing special, just Microsoft [unclear] just register. Request will go to the server. Once your account is created. And we are sending email to just verify you enter your own email address, to avoid spamming.
D: Uh-huh.
M: There is not special, there is just as way for emails.
D: Ok. And?
M: What do you mean “and”? ... I think there is nothing special or complicated in sending email.
D: Ok, Muhammed, here’s what I noticeD: you do not answer my questions. Ok? It looks like you do not even understand them.
M: Sorry, can you repeat the question?
D: I asked you several questions. During this conversation (while we are talking for, like, 3 minutes now) I asked you several questions. You answered almost none of them.
M: Yes, can please start with one by one. I will be answering.
D: All right. So, one of my question was: “Did I ask you to talk about overall architecture?”.
M: Eh, sorry, I was talking about what is the overall implementation of this project. And you asked me what was your role. I was talking about my role. My role was to create an architecture.
D: Ok, it looks like you, again, did not hear my question. Could you repeat my question before you answer that? (*3).
M: Sorry, actually, when we were talking about few seconds ago, and you just asked what was my role. And my role was from multiple tasks. So, I talked about the architecture and MVC-like things in the context of my role.
D: So, context of your role... Context of your role in what? What do you think I asked you?
M: Actually, I understand it was, there you wanted to ask me what was my role on this application, and I was just explaining my role on this application.
D: On “this” – on what “this” application? What do you mean under “this” application?
M: “This application” means “nTaskManager”.
D: I did not ask you that! I did not. I asked you, specifically, about this email.
Ok, Muhammad, I think there is no point to waste the time. I see what would happen going forward. You do not understand my questions – we are not able to work together. Thank you.
M: Thank you.
D: Bye.
--------------------

Foot notes
(*1) - The email subject is "Complete your nTask Registration". Email messaging is very important for my business, so I decided to start conversation with it.
(*2) - I started asking Mohammad about "when this code was written", but then changed my mind mid-sentence and moved on to the question that focused on his role in creating this email.
(*3) - At this point I sound noticeably angry, and that makes Muhammad a little bit nervous.


What do you think: if interviewee is not able to repeat my question and instead talks about a different topic - is it reasonable to terminate interview at that point?
dennisgorelik: (Default)
Santhosh claims in his resume that he is a Web deveper.
Interview showed that he is probably a web or graphic designer. But not a developer.
He mentioned Javascript, but when I started to talk with him about specific task that could be implemented in Javascript - he quickly gave up.
All people on his team have "Senior System Analyst" title, but from my understanding, Santhosh is a junior at his role.
When describing the accomplishments, Santhosh used word "we". Sometimes "we" meant him, and sometimes "we" meant his team.
Skype audio connection was good (which is not typical for Skype calls to India). That is probably because Santhosh worked (on the bench) from his employer office.
2000 rupees per day ($30/day = ~$700/month).

Unfortunately nothing of what Santhosh can do a meaningful contribution to PostJobFree: we need mostly backend work (middle-tier, parser, SQL queries and database design) or solid UX. Santhosh did not show signs of either of that knowledge.
So I told Santhosh that his skills do not match what I am looking for and asked him if he has any questions for me.
He did not have any questions.
Few minutes later he messaged me:
Santhosh: Hi is any possibility to give one task related to Ui Ux Design and see if I didn't complete we can drop for further or else we will continue as well
Ui Ux/Front-end Development
Dennis: I do not have tasks suitable for your skills
This was a 27 minutes interview.
I should learn to recognize such mismatches much faster.
dennisgorelik: (Default)
Couple of days ago I interviewed Volodimir from Ukraine.
Volodymyr promised to work 6 days per week 14 hour per day for about $1500/mo.
His expertise is in writing "data processing" code.

I asked Volodymyr to give me examples of input and output of his processes.
Volodimir said that the input could be anything.
I asked him to be more specific, so I could understand.
Volodimir kept insisting that it could be any data.
I asked what kind of business problem does that process solve.
Volodimir kept insisting that it does not matter.
Eventually we both gave up in frustration.
I wrote to Volodymyr "your skills probably would not work out for working with me -- I simply would not be able to communicate with you clearly".
Volodymyr replied:
Dennis,
Look
This is a content of one column of one row of more than 1000000 rows which I use as input data : "2025050201401014016060 6090305025050201401014016060609030507014010901303016014".
If this is interested for You - try to understand what is this.
Your knowleges in programming is so low.
At first, You need to understand what is a main tasks of programming.
At second, You need to choose a tasks which You will solve and decide for why You need it.
You absolutely not understanding bases of programming.
When You will have enough skills in programming You will stop ask "an examples of data you are working".
I think - speaking skills of Russian, English or other languages for speaking about nothing - is just spent time. 
I`m usually very busy. 
And don`t want spent time.All Your conclusions is - big mistake.
I don`t want spent time for nothing.
Sigh.
dennisgorelik: (Default)


That interview causes cognitive dissonance.
Of course UAE is an advanced country with GDP per Capita $43K (below the US, but above UK).
But UAE not exactly the most technologically advanced country. They are on a consuming side of technology.
So that interview was a little bit unexpected.

Both Elon Musk and the interviewer - Mohammed Al Gergawi (a Minister of Cabinet Affairs of the UAE) were a little bit nervous.
Al Gergawi mostly asked Musk his list of prepared questions (a pretty good list) and almost did not interrupt Musk. That resulted in a "psychologist session" for Musk: he drifted away from more generic questions (such as "why are you pushing the limits?") toward the topics he likes to tals about (how he made decision about building reusable rockets).

One time during interview Al Gergawi Musk and it added some embarrassment to both Musk and Gergawi:
----------
Al Gergawi: Why it is dangerous? I mean there is two view; one view is the artificial intelligence to help humanity, there is another school of think or thought is artificial intelligence as a threat to humanity. Why is it?

Elon Musk:
Well, I think it's both. You know – it's like – one way to think of it is, imagine we're going to be visited – imagine you're very confident that we're going to be visited by super intelligent aliens in, let's say, 10 years or 20 years at the most - super intelligent.

Al Gergawi:
So you think within 20 years ...

Elon Musk: Yeah so.

Al Gergawi: ... we'll have alien in Earth?

Elon Musk: [Surprised] Ha-ha. [Switching to a serious tone] Well, digital super intelligence will be like an alien.

Al Gergawi: It will be like an alien?

Elon Musk: Yeah.

Al Gergawi: But my question is: "do you think there is either intelligent life outside there"?

Elon Musk: It seems probable, but I think this is one of the great questions in physics and philosophy is where are the aliens; maybe they're among us, I don't know. Some people think I'm an alien. [Applause]
Not true. Not true.
----------

Transcript
dennisgorelik: (Default)
A job seeker asked me if "Reliance Capital Limited" company that contacted her is a legitimate employer.
Judging by the company name and the way they communicated with her (text-only) - it probably is a scam.

But in order to find out for sure if recruiter is real deal:
1) Call them (scammers frequently try to avoid talking on the phone and hide behind text messages and emails).
2) Assume that there could be a scammer on another end and do not reveal your sensitive personal details.
3) Typical signs of scammers:
- Bad phone connection quality (because scammers frequently use internet proxy).
- _Heavy_ foreign accent from a poor country (typically Nigerian accent, but occasionally could be Russian or some other accent). The scammer would may insist that they are in the US or in London.
- Incoherent business story (ask them what they sell to their customers).

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Dennis Gorelik

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