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I'm a relatively good programmer and can work very fast. But I can't keep all those keywords and parameters in my head, sometimes I need Google for even very basic stuff to make me remember.

The job I applied for will start with a paper based tech interview and I will probably never make to round 2. So I want to include this problem in the Weaknesses section of my resume to increase my chances. But can't figure out a good short term (not a native English speaker).

What term could I use for this in place of ??? in the following excerpt?

Soft skills: low bug rate; attention to detail; ...

Weaknesses: high level mathematics; ???

closed as off-topic by Jim G., gnat, AndreiROM, IDrinkandIKnowThings, thursdaysgeek Mar 15 '16 at 18:22

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  • 8
    You never list weaknesses on your resume. Not. Ever. (Listing generic soft skills like those is also discouraged, especially when you can't back them up with your work experience.) – Lilienthal Mar 13 '16 at 10:28
  • It worked well in the last 20 years. Good for me because I'm not getting frustrating tasks outside my to struggle with (and possibly forcing me to quit) and good for the company because they know what to expect and if I'm good for the job. Also creates a refreshing sense of honesty among the tiresome "I'm simply perfect"-type of resumes. – Arthur Mar 13 '16 at 11:32
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    Not following your logic here. So you expect to do poorly in this tech interview and you think putting this in your resume will somehow give you a pass to the second round? Really you would list Weaknesses: high level mathematics; basic syntax; – paparazzo Mar 13 '16 at 14:01
  • I don't think it's specific to my locale. It's possible I have invented this. I'm 45 yrs old and managed to get away without a technical interview thus far. They should just give me a chance to talk them down. :) I don't think there are other unusual things, maybe the results of my psychological test from an earlier job. Also my own idea. – Arthur Mar 13 '16 at 17:49
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    I'm adding this as a comment as it doesn't actually answer your question, but may remedy the cause of it. Check out this helpful shirt – agentroadkill Mar 13 '16 at 18:38
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What's a good short English term to say I suck at tech interviews?

Easy answer, there is NO positive way of saying this.

Since you have identified your problem, you're better off remedying it. Plenty of ways to do it. I actually have wall charts of different commands (but I'm not really a developer). But that's out of the scope of your question anyway.

  • I don't really think it's my problem. It's more of a selection process problem. The process seems to target geniuses who can do everything off the top of their heads, like hackers depicted in bad movies. There are many types of programmers and many ways to solve a problem. – Arthur Mar 13 '16 at 10:18
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    if you have issues remembering the basics, then that needs to be remedied. I've never met one of those hacker types from the movies and I've interviewed a lot of people. But thats not the question you asked, I suggest you modify the question to be more in line with your problem. – Kilisi Mar 13 '16 at 10:19
  • We had an SCJP certified guy in our last team who aced the tech interview but fired in months because he was just plain lazy. I'm just saying that using a tech interview for hard filtering is not a good way to get the best possible people, you will only get the ones with good memory. :) – Arthur Mar 13 '16 at 10:24
  • no argument from me on that, it doesn't tell you everything, but you need to have filters – Kilisi Mar 13 '16 at 10:27
  • @Arthur I'm no good at them either, but if you are allowed to bring code samples or detail your habits, that can go a long way to overcome doing poorly on esoteric questions which are easy to google but hard to memorize. – Richard U Mar 14 '16 at 16:24
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Those types of tests don't rely on things you can Google. When I look for programmers I don't look for their ability to Google or if they know what parameters createthread or accept takes. I expect the test will be more a test of your analytical and critical thinking skills, like for example can you debug a piece of code, find errors in the use of the language, or write a recursive depth first binary tree search.

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    Recursive depth first binary search tree? What the hell? NOBODY needs a binary search tree. That's the kind of thing you better forget one month after you leave university. – gnasher729 Mar 13 '16 at 9:27
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    @gnasher729: It's not something you should need to remember, it's something you work out. I left university 15 years ago. I got asked that exact question 6 months ago. I worked it out on the spot. – sashang Mar 13 '16 at 9:30
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    Well, they usually want complete code fragments on paper. I used too many languages to keep the syntax of each in my head. I could do a pilot project to brush up my Java skills before the interview, I guess. But I hate those SCJP book questions only the Java compiler could answer. – Arthur Mar 13 '16 at 9:54
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    @gnasher729: Ok. Tell EMC Isillon that. The point is to test how you think and what you can solve. I'd rather hire someone who can solve problems rather than repeat from memory facts about an API. What would you ask instead? – sashang Mar 13 '16 at 23:37
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    @Arthur When doing code fragments on paper or on a whiteboard, there is almost never an expectation that it actually compiles. However, you have to explain what you mean. So, say, you got mixed up and wrote "copy(dest, src)" instead of "copy(src, dest)" or something. As long as you can say what you meant when you wrote that, the interviewer won't care (the compiler/runtime will, though). – Brandin Mar 14 '16 at 8:48

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