Been programming one language or another since the 90s. So I have been exposed to a lot of things and worked on a lot of different systems. However I have never heard of Fizz Buzz before. I heard it was something they use to test people's programming skills during an interview. I figured I better look it up in case I get asked this during an interview. Of course I found a nice explanation on wikipedia:

I was shocked. This is being used to test programmers for competency? This is so trivial a non programmer could write the pseudocode to solve this problem. Is the bar really this low?

I remember I didn't want to pay for the C programming class in college. So I bought a book on C++ and read it cover to cover and wrote a bit of code. I then tested out of the C course (didn't know C was much different than C++ then, I started with Pascal). I didn't do that great on the written test. However for the coding test I easily passed that. I formatted the text in nice rows and columns using the modulus operator. The instructor said: "I have never seen anybody make it look this nice." Then I was shocked because that is "just how you do it".

It just seems to me that if fizz buzz is hard, then this may not be the right field for you. Am I egotistical in that opinion? None of this programming stuff has ever been particularly difficult for me.

  • 1
    You are just a 10xer!!

    But seriously, fizz buzz was usually just used to see if you “can” code. Not to test if you are a super 10x coder.
  • 3
    The Wikipedia page you linked has you covered:

    "Writing a program to output the first 100 FizzBuzz numbers is a trivial problem for any would-be computer programmer, so interviewers can easily filter out those with insufficient programming ability."

    So I guess it's just to weed out those who can't even code a fizzBuzz.
  • 2
    Fizzbuzz is mostly used to weed out people who absolutely should not be developers at all. It's trivial, so if you fail, they can immediately discard your application.

    It's also sometimes used in the opposite way, to find people who try to hard to be clever, people who think the obvious solution isn't clean or elegant enough. Too many if statements. Why check each value twice? "Clever" people try all sorts of tricks to shorten the code and it usually ends up looking awful. The most elegant solution to the problem is (as far as I've seen) the completely obvious one, and developers who can't accept that are likely to be the kind of developers who get stuck on a small, low-priority issue and spend way too much time trying to fix it.
  • 2
    I interviewed for an internship in college and (a year and a half ago now), the interview problem was to find the second largest value in an array. I wrote the function in like 1 minute, at the end I was so confused because I assumed everyone else interviewing was passing it as well, so I thought it must have been a terrible interview question. After getting and accepting the job I asked why they asked that question, apparently only 5 out of around 50 people solved it... and only I did it quickly. I’m blown away that people can’t do stuff like this. I’m a mostly self taught person so I don’t know why other people (CS majors no less) can’t do this
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