My programmer job interview with Electronic Arts So I had an in-person job interview today with EA, to follow up from the phone conversation of last week. It lasted almost 2 hours in total, and consisted of 2 separate one-on-one interviews with programmer guys, and then a little chat with a HR person.
I was asked lots of technical stuff by the engineer guys. The questions started with asking some specifics about my game Lux and what technologies I had used for it. Things like the build system, version control, etc. Some questions about how I was managing the cross-platform aspects of the code between the macintosh and windows versions.
Then there were some c++ questions. Things like "Here's a c++ header file. There are a whole bunch of errors in here, please point them out to me." Unfortunately my c++ is a little rusty, so I didn't too all that great on this part. I was also asked to fill out a few functions from their prototypes. One to count the depth of a tree, and one to implement the atoi() function. I was able to do this OK, with some help from them pointing out where my errors were (hehehe).
I was also asked about some good old fashioned mathematics problems. Now Algebra and Geometry was one of my favorite classes in high school (math is fun!), but not as much so in university (where it got a lot more abstract). Plus I was well out of practice. Questions were on the topics of vectors, matrices, and some trigonometry. Surprise test: What does it mean if the determinant of a matrix is 0?
I didn't get all of the math questions right, but I think I did pretty well overall. All of the interviewers were nice people, and it seems as if EA has got a pretty sweet compound in Vancouver. Oh yeah, I don't think I mentioned it, but the job would be in Vancouver. It would be a big change.
There would be a whole lot of plusses and minuses to such a job. I get worn out whenever I try to think about it in depth. So it's just wait and see what happens. They said they would probably get back to me next week.
Update: read the stunning conclusion, and read this info before emailing me
| What does it mean if the determinant of a matrix is 0?|
It's not invertable. If it represents a series of linear equations then it doesn't have a unique non-trivial solution. One of its eigenvalues is zero. I guess that makes it non-diagonalizable? I dunno.
It can mean a bunch of stuff depending on the context. I doubt they'll care if you don't have all this crap on the tip of your tongue because it's easy enough to look up.
| Yes, my answer was that the matrix has no inverse. Huzzah!|
| According to the chatter behind me on the bus this morning, I ride by the EA compound on my way to work every day.|
Which technically means it's in Burnaby, not Vancouver proper. For all you people who care.
But it is, indeed, pretty.
| This sounds similar to the interview I had with EA last month.|
The HR interview was silly. Typical type of crap: who's your role model, how do you motivate teams,...etc
They asked some other questions regarding specific tricky syntax issues also. For example, know the difference between a constant pointer, and a pointer to a constant char (and the constant pointer to constant char). Also be familar with inheritance and polymorphism. How does multiple inheritance work, familiarize yourself with private/protedted/public.
Another tough question. What was the last thing you learned in C++.
Something less tangble is the attitude of the interviewer. Careful not to intimdate the person into thinking you may take his job, after all if he feels that way, you won't be positively evaluated.
The interview will be based on your own resume, so the statements you make there will guide the interviewer. Be sure you possess the knowledge you claim to.
Best of luck in getting a job that will rape your soul.
| Actually a determinant of zero (in a nonhomogeneous system of linear equations) simply means that you aren't guaranteed to have a unique solution. A (square) matrix will have an inverse in the same polynomial domain if the determinant is 1.|
| Do you remember the conent of the C++ header file?|
| i have an interview with EA few days later. It is for the software engineer position. I had a phone interview with the HR few days ago and they invited me for a face-to-face interview. I have been reading my C++ textbook all over again. I had almost forgotten everything from Linear algebra learnt in university. Can anyone give me more tips on what was asked in your interview? Thanks....|
| I completed an in person interview with EA recently for software engineer but oddly enough there wasn't even one math question and, other than the sample problems, very few C++ questions. It seemed that they mostly wanted to know if "you" can solve problems. The logic being that it's easier to learn a new skill than to have an inate ability to solve problems and get stuff done effectively. The written test consists of demonstrating solutions to given scenarios and programming examples just complex enough to show some of your C++ optimization skills.|
The campus and work environment is by far the nicest I've seen. They may work their people hard but they appear to be willing to give back as well.
FWIW: I got the job.
| Hi i just applied to EA a few days ago and wanted to know how soon they would contact me, and if you had any tips or suggestions for the phone or face-to-face interview would be greatly appreciated! thanks!|
| hey! i have an EA face to face interview in a few days.|
i have absolutely no idea in C++. i do have basic knowledge in JAVA and i am excellent in data structures.
could u tell me how to go about preparing for the interview (as learning C++ now from scratch is out of the option.).Also could u pls tell if they ask any questions on C data structrues..
thanks a lot
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