Elements of Programming Interviews: The Insiders' Guide

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The core of EPI is a collection of over 300 problems with detailed solutions, including 100 figures, 250 tested programs, and 150 variants. The problems are representative of questions asked at the leading software companies.

The book begins with a summary of the nontechnical aspects of interviewing, such as common mistakes, strategies for a great interview, perspectives from the other side of the table, tips on negotiating the best offer, and a guide to the best ways to use EPI.

The technical core of EPI is a sequence of chapters on basic and advanced data structures, searching, sorting, broad algorithmic principles, concurrency, and system design. Each chapter consists of a brief review, followed by a broad and thought-provoking series of problems. We include a summary of data structure, algorithm, and problem solving patterns.
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About the author

Adnan, Tsung-Hsien, and Amit have worked at Google, Facebook, Microsoft, IBM, Qualcomm, and several startups. They co-developed algorithms and systems used by hundreds of millions of people everyday. They have extensive experience with interviewing candidates, making hiring decisions, and being interviewed.
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Additional Information

Publisher
EPI
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Published on
Dec 31, 2012
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Pages
480
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ISBN
9781479274833
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Language
English
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Genres
Computers / Programming / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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“Ask a mechanical, structural, or electrical engineer how far they would get without a heavy reliance on a firm mathematical foundation, and they will tell you, ‘not far.’ Yet so-called software engineers often practice their art with little or no idea of the mathematical underpinnings of what they are doing. And then we wonder why software is notorious for being delivered late and full of bugs, while other engineers routinely deliver finished bridges, automobiles, electrical appliances, etc., on time and with only minor defects. This book sets out to redress this imbalance. Members of my advanced development team at Adobe who took the course based on the same material all benefited greatly from the time invested. It may appear as a highly technical text intended only for computer scientists, but it should be required reading for all practicing software engineers.”
—Martin Newell, Adobe Fellow

“The book contains some of the most beautiful code I have ever seen.”
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“I am happy to see the content of Alex’s course, the development and teaching of which I strongly supported as the CTO of Silicon Graphics, now available to all programmers in this elegant little book.”
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“Paul’s patience and architectural experience helped to organize Alex’s mathematical approach into a tightly-structured edifice—an impressive feat!”
—Robert W. Taylor, Founder of Xerox PARC CSL and DEC Systems Research Center

Elements of Programming provides a different understanding of programming than is presented elsewhere. Its major premise is that practical programming, like other areas of science and engineering,must be based on a solid mathematical foundation. The book shows that algorithms implemented in a real programming language, such as C++, can operate in the most general mathematical setting. For example, the fast exponentiation algorithm is defined to work with any associative operation. Using abstract algorithms leads to efficient, reliable, secure, and economical software.

This is not an easy book. Nor is it a compilation of tips and tricks for incremental improvements in your programming skills. The book’s value is more fundamental and, ultimately, more critical for insight into programming. To benefit fully, you will need to work through it from beginning to end, reading the code, proving the lemmas, and doing the exercises. When finished, you will see how the application of the deductive method to your programs assures that your system’s software components will work together and behave as they must.

The book presents a number of algorithms and requirements for types on which they are defined. The code for these descriptions—also available on the Web—is written in a small subset of C++ meant to be accessible to any experienced programmer. This subset is defined in a special language appendix coauthored by Sean Parent and Bjarne Stroustrup.

Whether you are a software developer, or any other professional for whom programming is an important activity, or a committed student, you will come to understand what the book’s experienced authors have been teaching and demonstrating for years—that mathematics is good for programming, and that theory is good for practice.

When programmers list their favorite books, Jon Bentley’s collection of programming pearls is commonly included among the classics. Just as natural pearls grow from grains of sand that irritate oysters, programming pearls have grown from real problems that have irritated real programmers. With origins beyond solid engineering, in the realm of insight and creativity, Bentley’s pearls offer unique and clever solutions to those nagging problems. Illustrated by programs designed as much for fun as for instruction, the book is filled with lucid and witty descriptions of practical programming techniques and fundamental design principles. It is not at all surprising that Programming Pearls has been so highly valued by programmers at every level of experience.


In this revision, the first in 14 years, Bentley has substantially updated his essays to reflect current programming methods and environments. In addition, there are three new essays on

testing, debugging, and timing set representations string problems

All the original programs have been rewritten, and an equal amount of new code has been generated. Implementations of all the programs, in C or C++, are now available on the Web.


What remains the same in this new edition is Bentley’s focus on the hard core of programming problems and his delivery of workable solutions to those problems. Whether you are new to Bentley’s classic or are revisiting his work for some fresh insight, the book is sure to make your own list of favorites.

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