Hello, I am Kris (Article about a Twitter meme in english). I was a Database Scalability Engineer at Booking.com.
When interviewing people for my replacement, I have been looking for a “sense of cost” in architectural decision making. I have been giving people rough problem descriptions of what others or I am currently working on, and asked them what they were thinking about the problem.
Since I did not have a solution to the problem yet, my goal was more observing the idea-discovery process and the reasoning about consequences of various approaches in terms of load, toil, network communication and so on, than an actual solution for the problem.
Oh, and I have been a MySQL consultant and database person since 2005, and still google ALTER TABLE syntax.
Many years ago, when I was still at university, I was earning money for my studies by teaching stuff to long term unemployed people at Akademie für Berufliche Bildung in Kiel.
Classes at afbb ran for one year, and I was supposed to teach Unix Sysadmin and Networking to people. We wrote four large tests a year.
The first one was without notes.
That was the easy one, because a solution was deemed to be correct if the idea and general outline of commands was correct. The goal was to verify that the candidates understood certain basics that every Unix person is to know by heart (permissions, for example, or some basic commands and everyday procedures).
The three tests later in the year had to be done with Book, Notes and Manpages available.
The main idea was: If it would be available to you being alone on a site, you could use it in the test – with certain adjustments to equality requirements for all candidates. These tests were much harder, because if you can validate and look up things, they better be correct in your writeup.