Senior PHP Developer Position Interview Questions
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Thread: Senior PHP Developer Position Interview Questions

  1. #1
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    Senior PHP Developer Position Interview Questions

    Hello all. I'm going in for a technical interview next week for a Senior PHP Developer position, and was wondering if anyone here has gone through one or has given one. In either case, what kinds of questions/problems did you encounter? I want to make sure to nail this interview and am just trying to prepare myself for it, but am not sure exactly how to do so. Any thoughts?

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    High Energy Magic Dept. NogDog's Avatar
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    A lot will depend on what this employer considers a "senior developer" to be, the main thing being whether you would be expected to be a team leader or a team member. If it's simply for a team member, the questions will probably be mostly technical in terms of actually creating code (syntax, database, OOP, etc.). If it's more of team leader position, there will likely be some of that, but also a lot more emphasis on the software development process: analysis, design, estimation, testing, deployment, etc.
    Please give us a simple answer, so that we don't have to think, because if we think, we might find answers that don't fit the way we want the world to be." ~ from Nation, by Terry Pratchett

    "But the main reason that any programmer learning any new language thinks the new language is SO much better than the old one is because hes a better programmer now!" ~ http://www.oreillynet.com/ruby/blog/...ck_to_p_1.html


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    I think it's for a team member type position. That's how they described it to me. Apparently all the coding is done in teams of 2. So I'm guessing it will be more of the technical kind of interview.

    For something like this, how important is it to know details about specific functions? Like if a question involves calculating a result and then sending an email, do you think it's a big deal to know exactly the parameters that are going to be fed to the mail() function? Or do you think it's more about seeing how someone is actually tackling a problem?

    I guess my main problem is that I've programmed in so many different languages, that I'm always having to look up specifics like that. I hope that won't be an issue. Maybe I should be upfront about that before the interview.

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    High Energy Magic Dept. NogDog's Avatar
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    It really depends on the interviewer. To me, knowing that you have experience in many languages would be a plus; and even though I've mainly been doing PHP for a couple years now, certainly I am constantly referring to the manual (or my editor's hints) for specific syntax issues. I think most interviewers should be in the same boat, so I wouldn't worry about it too much; just be ready to explain how you would resolve this: would you use the PHP on-line manual, a favorite editor's syntax help, etc.

    If I were doing the interview, I'd be more interested in how you plan and design your code and the general techniques you use to address common issues, not whether you know what the exact parameter list is to function foo().
    Please give us a simple answer, so that we don't have to think, because if we think, we might find answers that don't fit the way we want the world to be." ~ from Nation, by Terry Pratchett

    "But the main reason that any programmer learning any new language thinks the new language is SO much better than the old one is because hes a better programmer now!" ~ http://www.oreillynet.com/ruby/blog/...ck_to_p_1.html


    eBookworm.us

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    Cool. Thanks! That's what I'm hoping I get asked as well. I guess I'll find out this week. Will update the post then. Thanks again!

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    Tricky interview questions.

    I've had my share of those over the years. Here are a few that come to mind:

    • Q. What is the difference between 'include' and 'require?'
      A. A require halts program execution, while an include does not. Other than that, there is no difference.

      Q. What is the difference between an echo and print?
      A. None that I know of. (Some may "esoterically" argue this that echo is actually a function, while print is not.)

      Q. In the following code what does the '@' symbol do?
      $connection = @mysql_connect("localhost", $my_id, $my_password) or die($error_msg);
      A. It truncates the full MySql warning to just the $error_msg text (so some hacker cannot deduce more information).


    Granted, picky, picky, picky. When I can't remember the answer to a tricky phone screen question (don't you love those) I usually tell them I have a mind like Einstein. Yeah, Einstein was criticized because he couldn't remember his own phone number. He said, "Why should I when I can look it up?"

    Seriously, are we paid to be memorizing zombies, or are we paid to know where to get the information that we need? I may not be "Data" from Star Trek, but I've got some pretty good reference materials.

    Hey, this is a great topic! Maybe we should start a regular section here, dedicated to tricky interview questions.

    If everybody's thinking alike, somebody isn't thinking.

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    Pedantic Curmudgeon Weedpacket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hadoob024
    Apparently all the coding is done in teams of 2.
    Sounds like some sort of pair programming; I wonder if they're into other "Extreme Programming" practices?
    THERE IS AS YET INSUFFICIENT DATA FOR A MEANINGFUL ANSWER
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    Settled 4 red convertible dalecosp's Avatar
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    I went to my last "prepared" ... a special page with links to my "portfolio" of currently online work. A few sample (printed) pages of pretty code, PuTTY on my thumb drive, etc.

    Question wise, I got questions about whether I could implement certain projects that were part of the company's strategy. They were candid; so was I. "That shouldn't be a problem", "I'd have to read up on that", "That would be tricky, careful work, but is certainly possible --- I'd be very concerned about NULL values, for example").

    HTH,
    /!!\ mysql_ is deprecated --- don't use it! Tell your hosting company you will switch if they don't upgrade! /!!!\ ereg() is deprecated --- don't use it!

    dalecosp "God doesn't play dice." --- Einstein "Perl is hardly a paragon of beautiful syntax." --- Weedpacket

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