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A puzzle asked for HR interview

 
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Interviewer:Have you ever been to MG Road.
Me : Yes sir,i used to
Interviewer:How many flower shops are there in MG Road???
Me : I dont know excactly but couple of thems i know.If
you want exact number I will go there and find out
Interviewer therwise
Me :I will ask my friends and collect information and will find it
out.

-----------------
interviewer was not happy with my answer.Does anyone know the right way of answering this question.
 
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Be spesific. You are talking about MG Road of which city??
 
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You will find M.G.Road is almost every city. The irony is that shops do business in fields which Mahatma Gandhi would not have never done. What a shame.
 
harilal ithikkat
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MG road in bangalore.
but i dont think that what he mean by that question is find out the no of shops..
 
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You should say-Total number of shops are 1/3 *number of gray hair on your head.
 
harilal ithikkat
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but he was damn serious........
since it was for a job i was not in a mood to think it in a funny way
 
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Why was he asking this question? Finding out if you have a good memory or something? Some of these HR people get on my nerves, even if you already have the job.... In every question or conversation you think, what strange conclusions are they drawing from my answer this time. Well. Just let it be. Some of these people and some of their questions are just irritating.
 
Pradeep bhatt
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Once IBM guy asked me. List out items which give out light

I said sun,moon,tube light,firefly,candle when lighted. When I was saying, he was noting it down.
 
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Most men like watches or cars. That would've been my answer.You shouldv'e told him a real man does not need to remember how many flower shops there are and that he could ask you how many motor cycle dealerships there were in the area or which restaurants served the best tandoori chicken or something. Say this in a way to make the interviewer feel a little embarrassed and like he lost all respect in your eyes. If he still persisted you could say you always use the internet to send flowers so you never had a need to pay notice.
 
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Seeing this i remembered my first interview after first round of interview following were the questions asked by my Manager and HR

Q) What was the color of Carpet in the Hall
A: I didn't Notice

Q) Were Girls Pretty
A: i didn't See

Q) You dont observe anything
A: I was just thinking of my interview

Q) What is earth's Gravity measure
A: 9.9 m/sec

Q) Can you tell Newton's third law
A) every action has equal and opposite reaction

Q) what if made you to work with Girls and they harass you a lot !!!
A: I will try to cooperate and work with them if out of control i will let
my managers know

Q) You are working here and you suddenly die !!! what should people think about you ?
A: !!! They must think i was good person


Q) with out lifting your head can you tell how many cracks are there on ceiling
A: (At this point i was very irritated but wanted to hold on, I was searching for job as fresher since last 2 months ) I think there are one , then i saw up there were quite a few

I was grilled like this for two and half hours later on they again asked lot of technical questions again, and final question was when would you like to start, i said right now from today , then manager took me up and showed me a place to sit for rest of the day.

I thought real essence to ask you silly question is to test how patient and tolerent you are how you respond when you are irritated to maximum, Some of the HR's they call you for giving offer letter and they make you wait intentionally for more than 2 hours.
[ December 02, 2008: Message edited by: Sri Anand ]
 
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Originally posted by Sri Anand:
Seeing this i remembered my first interview after first round of interview following were the questions asked by my Manager and HR

Q) What was the color of Carpet in the Hall
A: I didn't Notice

Q) Were Girls Pretty
A: i didn't See

Q) You dont observe anything
A: I was just thinking of my interview

Q) with out lifting your head can you tell how many cracks are there on ceiling
A: (At this point i was very irritated but wanted to hold on, I was searching for job as fresher since last 2 months ) I think there are one , then i saw up there were quite a few

I suspect they were trying to see whether you had enough Asberger traits to be a super-programmer.

They would have been wrong answers, however, if you'd been looking for a job in management.
 
Sri Anand
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Asberger traits to be a super-programmer



I didnt get what this means . However i was being interviewed for a position of intern/Junior programer at that time
 
Java Cowboy
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They probably ask you questions like that to see how you react when faced with a problem that you don't know the answer to immediately, and how you approach the problem.

Asperger syndrome is a kind of autism-like syndrome.
[ December 02, 2008: Message edited by: Jesper Young ]
 
Sri Anand
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http://www.geocities.com/redmondrose/DigitalPie.htm

Yeah now i relate

But what made you conclude they these answers would have been wrong if it were a management Job
[ December 02, 2008: Message edited by: Sri Anand ]
 
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Why are manhole covers round?
 
Sri Anand
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Because your question is irrelevant
 
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When asked a question like this, you should state your assumptions and provide your best estimate. For example "MG Road is about ten blocks long, and I recall there being at least one flower shop on every block, so I'd estimate that there are twelve to fifteen." They're trying to find out how you think. "Give me an hour to walk over there, walk up and down, and count the flower shops" is not a thinking man's answer.
 
Sri Anand
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After having answered so many irrelevant question, I was also asked

Q) why do you think we are asking you all this ?
A: I think you dont have much work today , They seem to be ok with the answer

Usually for these kind of questions yes we can try to answer logically , how about comments/Questions which are more fun

Q) did you ever think of having a degree from top colleges
A: i never visiualized so much when i was schooling ( I remember one of collegue was asked same question he told me he answered back if i were from top school i would not have been here answering questions like this )

Q) Do you now ? what would you like to be after 3 years
A: (I thought for this question for a minute not much time and was about to answer) before that Manager commented become Fat with a big laugh, I just laughed and he continued with next question
 
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Originally posted by harilal ithikkat:
...Interviewer: How many flower shops are there in MG Road? ...


I saw some on the side of the road, but I don't recall any "in" the road.
 
Ernest Friedman-Hill
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Originally posted by marc weber:

I saw some on the side of the road, but I don't recall any "in" the road.



You are such an American.
 
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Type that "How many ..." question into Google (it's even easier if you can get away with just discussing it theoretically) and show them the number of results. Chances are that they'll take it. If not , increase gradually the sophistication level of the process (a more convoluted search, for example) until they do take it.
 
Sri Anand
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Some companies have 12 to 16 rounds of interview after scrutinizing 1st round as written. And some companies keep it simple with 2 or more face to face interviews.

Be patient with all sort of questions if you are desperate.
[ December 02, 2008: Message edited by: Sri Anand ]
 
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The trick is to train yourself to answer these kinds of inane questions with an equally inane pre-programmed response. That response should always be: 42. No exceptions. Seriously.
 
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Originally posted by Jelle Klap:
The trick is to train yourself to answer these kinds of inane questions with an equally inane pre-programmed response. That response should always be: 42. No exceptions. Seriously.


42? Do you mean tell interviewer any random number as the question is illogical? It is just to check how much spontaneous are you. I guess the interviewer is less interested in answer rather he/she is testing how you come up/reply in odd question/situation? How much intelligently you can think.
 
Saurabh Pillai
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or you meant this by 42?
 
Jelle Klap
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If you consistently provide the same answer it ceases to be random.
Not that's it's at all random to begin with. It's more of a retort meant to test the interviewers sense of humour, or lack thereof, and repetoire of pop culture references.

By the way, you failed

Edit: Hey! No fair sneaking in posts while I'm busy typing up a reply!
[ December 02, 2008: Message edited by: Jelle Klap ]
 
marc weber
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Originally posted by Ernest Friedman-Hill:
... You are such an American.


Ouch!
 
harilal ithikkat
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Why are manhole covers round?

This was the first question asked by that guy..actually as per they mentioned in the schedule i was waiting for a technical interview.
The first question waas this......
Now its clear what he meant by the interview......

i know the answer of this question........
its because the man hole is round.
But i didn't answer him.......... .......
because as a test cricketer starts his innings i just defend it without scoring any runs......But it took 2 more moths for me to get into ground(IT industry)
 
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Originally posted by harilal ithikkat:
Why are manhole covers round?


So that it won't fall in. Round is the only shape that won't fall in.

I agree with comments upthread. They are asking how you think, how you approach a problem where there is no clear answer.

And 42 is always a great answer in a geek interview. But only if you have really read the book.
 
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Originally posted by harilal ithikkat:


Interviewer:Have you ever been to MG Road.
Me : Yes sir,i used to

Interviewer:How many flower shops are there in MG Road???



You could have answered, MG road is frequented mostly by college kids and people in and around their 20-30's so given the profile of the crowd, I would be surprised if the street does not have a couple of them and if not then i guess i open one if i do not make it in the interview.

Not arguing with the fact that some HR interview questions are pretty dumb, giving the above interviewer the benefit of the doubt i guess the person was looking for how much situational awareness(profile of crowd in mg road) is possessed by you at the same time are you able to process the information(flower shops makes good business sense when the crowd is of the above profile) made available to you.
 
Marcel Wentink
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Well your reaction could also depend on the market. At the moment I was experienced and the demand for programmers was really high, no HR person ever had the nerve to ask me these questions. Probably also because then I would have said, and how I would love to have done that: "I do not want to work for your company since you ask me stupid questions, go find someone else, bye, bye!!". But somehow they only ask these questions to freshmen when the market is down.

 
Sri Anand
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its true the situation is same of 2001 for freshers out of college market is down no openings, some companies which gave letters are now backtracking,probably Companies tend to ask such questions to Freshers just because they haven't worked any where yet, they do not have record to believe they are taking in a cadid with suitable appitude and attitude, hence they have to make all sorts of test.
 
Frank Silbermann
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me: They were trying to see whether you had enough Asberger traits to be a super programmer. You passed.

Originally posted by Sri Anand:
I didn't get what this means . However i was being interviewed for a position of intern/Junior programer at that time

I spelled it wrong. It was Aspergers' traits. See:

http://autismAspergersSyndrome.suite101.com/article.cfm/positive_traits_of_aspergers_syndrome

http://srl2.tripod.com/andrew/asperger.htm
 
Don Solomon
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Pat, very good. Doesn't matter how you position a round manhole cover, it will never fall in. That was a question that I was asked on an interview. I am glad I knew the answer.
 
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Yesterday's news paper had a similar writeup that said about Fermi questions being asked in the top B schools in India.

I have a feeling that the person asking such questions will be satisfied by any answer that either sounds logical or can be justified.

[Edit: link corrected ]
[ December 04, 2008: Message edited by: Amit Ghorpade ]
 
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Originally posted by Pat Farrell:
Round is the only shape that won't fall in.



That's not quite right. For example, if the cover is shaped as an equilateral triangle, it will not fall in either, no matter how you position it.

What's unique about the round covers is that they have the largest area/perimeter ratio, and I think that is the real reason why manhole covers are made round. They are the most discrete, so to speak. With any other shape, they would have to take a larger part of the road.
[ December 03, 2008: Message edited by: John Smith ]
 
Pat Farrell
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Originally posted by John Smith:
That's not quite right. For example, if the cover is shaped as an equilateral triangle, it will not fall in either, no matter how you position it.



Hmmm, Well, round is sure a lot easier to make, cast or turn than a equilateral triangle. One key to round is that you can't put in in wrong, which would also be true of a eq-tri if it was actually equal. If you had manufacturing errors, it might fall on your toes. And manhole covers are heavy.

If an equilateral triangle, then other shapes may as well. I'm thinking of the shape of a Wankel engine's rotor.
 
harilal ithikkat
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why manhole is round???
its the question asked in Microsoft's interview.....
the right answer is.......manholes are round.......so no way ......we should make the cover in round shape.....the next question will be why manhole is round.......its because round is having maximum surface area so a human can easily get in through round open
[ December 03, 2008: Message edited by: harilal ithikkat ]
 
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[John]: That's not quite right. For example, if the cover is shaped as an equilateral triangle, it will not fall in either, no matter how you position it.

I disagree - I think an equilateral triangle could fit through a slightly-smaller equilateral triangular hole fairly easily. Because sqrt(3)/2 < 2. (Or sqrt(3)/4 < 1 if you prefer.) The "height" of any triangle (measured perpendicular to its longest side length) is less than the longest side length - which means any triangular manhole cover could fit through its associated manhole, assuming that the manhole thickness and lip are not too noticeable.

I think if I were asked the manhole question, I'd politely note that it's a very well-known question at this point. I could give the standard response if they want it, or perhaps some alternatives (like that fact that circles are easy to roll), but really, any company that's still using this particular puzzle seems way behind the times.
 
Sri Anand
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but really, any company that's still using this particular puzzle seems way behind the times.



Would this answer help? in a way you are challening interviewer to be more tough.I always thought you should try to answer in way you dont invite more such questions
 
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