Category Archives: Inspiration

Google Onsite Interview : Best Interview Experience

This semester I sent my resume to one of Google university recruiters on Carnegie Mellon University, and then I got a call from Google Pittsburgh office to have an onsite interview last Monday.

Given timespan about 3 weeks from the phone call to the onsite interview, I prepared for the interview like crazy, literally, with really-demanding courses at CMU, reaching its finals. Those courses alone already ate my whole weekend for the whole semester. Having said that, it’s not a secret that only 25% of onsite candidates get hired. It’s really a huge challenge.

My interview was scheduled around 9.40 in the morning. There were 3 other people having interviews that day, all of them from CMU. Our recruiter guided us through the office, showing the working space area filled with engineers, free coffee shop, and a really huge hammock, enough for more than 10 people.

 as seen in this Business insider article

Then, we ended up in a meeting room with a white board and a big meeting table. Turned out, that room would be my interviewing room for the rest of the day, the other three would have interviews in another rooms. After giving some brief explanation, the other three people left the room with the recruiter, and my interview started. There were 4 interviews that day, 45 minutes long each, with a lunch interview between the 3rd and the 4th interview.

The questions asked were really fundamental of CS, data structure and algorithm. The interviewers really cared for:

1. Our thinking process in finding solution
2. Big-O efficiency
3. Whiteboard coding. Proper code is important, despite very little details on syntax don’t count. I mean, if you forgot which one is correct between “ArrayToChar()” or “CharToArray()” or forgot ‘;’ it doesn’t really matter.

Having said that, I enjoyed the interviews so much. I can say this is the best interview experience I’ve ever had. The interviewers were very nice and very fun to talk to. They were there to help you, not to intimidate you. I enjoyed having discussion with them. I can only think that if I have this kind of discussion everyday, I can only get smarter and smarter every day.

I think I solved all of the problems, even though some of them were not really optimal, or maybe have a bug or two in the code. There was 1 interview where I could solve the problem in 15 minutes with an optimal solution, and the interviewer gave me another problem, then I solved it again even though it’s not very optimal. At the end, I have tried my best, and I’m still waiting for the decision. Even though if I don’t get the job, nothing to regret it since it has been tremendous experience.

The Most Difficult Task

After all of these years, I have realized what the most difficult task is.
It is referred to one of the great quotes :

if you would like to be an expert, try to practice 10000 hours. It works.

Yup. That’s it. Everyone can be an expert if they would like, and willing to work hard.
But basically,  it is one’s skill which can achieve 10000 hours of practicing faster than the others.

One can accomplish the same goal in 5 years, another one in 3 years, even another one just in less than 1 year.
All based on their skill in time management.

As we live on the same planet, the same universe, we are all given 24 hours a day.
Someone who is successful, someone who is not, a doctor, a professor, a president, a star-singer, a criminal, a dropped-out student, all are given 24 hours a day. Not much, not less. The same time, different result. How can that happen?

be thankful of time given to you. Like the river, there will never be the same water flows twice in the same place.
It is also difficult for me to manage the time.


Just an introspection of me.

Be Confused?

After new year, I have been assigned to do different projects from the projects I used to do, MIMIX.

Even I still handle some MIMIX projects, this new project is about different things. What does it mean? it means I have to learn that thing from the scratch,
from the beginning,
from zero,
from nothing.

Confused? Of course!

But one of my greatest mentor, Ivandeva of IBM, gave me an inspirational quote that I will never forget.

“Being confused is a sign that we are developing ourselves”

So, be confused?

That means you are developing your self.
There is no one that can be expert just in one night. everybody needs process.

Just be positive thinking and never give up.
if you are confused, it means you are taking the next step to be better.

Passion and Dreams

it will be very fun if you do what you love to do, and more over, you can earn your living from that!

I do really jealous for some people who have found their passion in working and earn living for that.

For example is my apprentice friend at IBM.
He was offered a job from the most successful IT company in the world, but he choose to build his own shop instead of working for the company.

He started to build his own batik fashion shop and now he is so passionate about it since I always see him in a happy expression, full of smile even though his shop makes him to sleep only 2 hours a day and makes him to spend all his energy, but it seems doesn’t matter for him because he is so passionate about it!

I do remember Steve Jobs when he said this in his commencement in Stanford in 2005.
he said;

“The only way to do great works is to love what you do. you’ve got to find what you love. If you haven’t, keep looking. DON’T SETTLE”

wish I gotta find that.