TFLB's blog

By TFLB, history, 3 months ago, In English,

I just saw this (http://codeforces.com/blog/entry/52712) blog post which talks about dilemna of a top programmer about his career.

I was just curious probably like some others that where do top programmers have worked / interned or are currently working?

It would be great if you can share how you got selected, shortlisted or rejected (I hope not).

At the time of writing this post, I know about 2 guys (Petr working at google) and I_love_Tanya_Romanova who currently interned at google.

 
 
 
 
  • Vote: I like it  
  • +49
  • Vote: I do not like it  

»
3 months ago, # |
Rev. 4   Vote: I like it -45 Vote: I do not like it

I don't know about others but, one of India's best competitive programmer [user:rajat1603]is currently doing graduation from Chennai Mathematical Institute(CMI).

  • »
    »
    3 months ago, # ^ |
      Vote: I like it -30 Vote: I do not like it

    Why down votes guys? Its not funny to just down vote anyone without any reason. I just shared a piece of information. I am not high rated that doesn't mean I should be down voted.

    • »
      »
      »
      3 months ago, # ^ |
        Vote: I like it +31 Vote: I do not like it

      Perhaps because school  ≠  work or internship.

»
3 months ago, # |
  Vote: I like it +68 Vote: I do not like it

I have interned at Asana (San Francisco, CA, US), Samsung R&D (Seoul, South Korea), Google (Cambridge, MA, US), and Google (Mountain View, CA, US). I've got interviews with them in either of two ways: referral or directly contacted by a recruiter.

I've also applied to few companies for this year's internship via their websites and never heard back.

  • »
    »
    3 months ago, # ^ |
      Vote: I like it +5 Vote: I do not like it

    Thanks for sharing this. :)

    Have you ever applied in quant trading firms or you know someone who is working in that area?

    I heard that the interviews and work involved is quite mathematical and logic based in them and added to this, a lot of firms are also working with cutting edge technology related to compiler designing and all that stuff. I thought maybe this is the sort of work some competitive programmers will like more.

»
3 months ago, # |
  Vote: I like it +7 Vote: I do not like it

For 1st question, there are many competitive programmers working/worked at Google: http://codeforces.com/ratings/organization/40 . There are many more not in that list like Tomek Czajka and Neal Wu.

For 2nd question, Google contact many people who do well on GCJ. Many people got referred (easier than applying directly, I know as I referred dozens of people).

  • »
    »
    3 months ago, # ^ |
      Vote: I like it 0 Vote: I do not like it

    Thanks for sharing this. :)

»
3 months ago, # |
  Vote: I like it +8 Vote: I do not like it

If you study in the US and are present on Piazza (which is Q&A web service primarily for courses in college), Piazza provides an opportunity to put your resume on their careers website, and many recruiters from different trading firms like Jump Trading, Radix Trading, Two Sigma, etc. would contact you through via your email.

They do that because they like your competitive programming skills--I once asked the recruiter about what they found interesting in my resume.

  • »
    »
    3 months ago, # ^ |
      Vote: I like it 0 Vote: I do not like it

    Oh okay. Are you working with one of them right now?

    And are you having any achievements in the same field like ICPC, GCJ or FHC or they checked your skills in some coding rounds or something similar?

    • »
      »
      »
      3 months ago, # ^ |
        Vote: I like it +7 Vote: I do not like it

      I am not working with them right now since that is not the field that I am currently interested in. However, I have interviewed with a few and can say that they are indeed looking for people with competitive programming skills. There are two particular roles in many of those trading companies:

      1. Algorithm developer: for this, you clearly need to have skills in problem-solving, which fortunately is fostered by participating in this kind of contests. However, they also want you to know statistics, and most of the interview questions I had were on stats (you can look up the questions on glassdoor).

      2. Systems programmer: for many of the HFT firms, you will need to develop super-fast systems and, coding skills in C/C++ are really valued. Fortunately, doing coding competition often hones skills in these languages. The questions often include systems-related issues like cache, memory layout (heap/stack/etc.) and other low-level stuff.

      My background is not stellar, I never participated in IOI or ACM ICPC World Finals. The most I did were winning prizes on the national stage and making it to top 500 in Facebook Hacker Cup. But that was in high school, I am way worse now since I haven't been practicing, but, as you can see, that doesn't stop you from getting recruited.

      • »
        »
        »
        »
        3 months ago, # ^ |
          Vote: I like it 0 Vote: I do not like it

        The best explanation I could have got from anybody regarding what I wanted to ask. :)

        Thank you truongnam1996

      • »
        »
        »
        »
        3 months ago, # ^ |
          Vote: I like it +1 Vote: I do not like it

        Thank you very much for sharing such useful information, and before this I have never thought that trading companies were looking for competitive programmers... I think your information may provide people with more alternatives (at least for me), and thank you again.

»
3 months ago, # |
  Vote: I like it +15 Vote: I do not like it

I've worked at Google (Mountain View) and Jane Street (London). I got referred by a friend to Google, and with Jane Street I just applied online. I think referrals are really useful if you have never worked at one of the top companies before so that they don't just ignore your application, afterwards not that much :)

  • »
    »
    3 months ago, # ^ |
      Vote: I like it 0 Vote: I do not like it

    Thank you for sharing this. :)

    Can you tell me (if possible) where you had more challenging work to do out of these two? I have heard that life at Jane Street is quite hectic compared to Google.

    • »
      »
      »
      3 months ago, # ^ |
        Vote: I like it +21 Vote: I do not like it

      At Google I was doing machine learning (Google Brain), which was quite different from what I did at Jane Street, so it seems quite hard to compare. However, I think a random project at JS would be more interesting that a random one at Google, but that's obviously just my impression.

      If it comes to work life, it seems that people at Google slack off more during the day, but sometimes do work stuff from home, also during the weekend. At Jane Street you won't see people playing pools at 1 pm, but the office is closed on weekends, and most people don't have access to JS network from home. Not saying either of those is better than the other, I guess you'll have to figure out for yourself!

      • »
        »
        »
        »
        3 months ago, # ^ |
          Vote: I like it 0 Vote: I do not like it

        May I ask that when you were working at Google, how the work or the project was developed? I mean, for instance, as a graduate student in university, one usually read papers and communicate with others to find new research directions or form some solid ideas which can be further investigated. I think at companies, one should still find some "sources" (as some inspiration) to start a new project or push the project forward.

»
3 months ago, # |
Rev. 8   Vote: I like it -9 Vote: I do not like it

Do anyone here has any idea about strat or quant role at Goldman Sachs? How are their interviews, kind of work they do and work life balance.

  • »
    »
    3 months ago, # ^ |
      Vote: I like it +7 Vote: I do not like it

    A few seniors I know interned last year at Goldman sachs. Most of them in software engineering division and a few ones in strat division. So just putting in their reviews here, it goes like this.

    Software guys - Yeah, the work is good, place too is interesting. Its more about managing the current systems and less related to proper development. Pay is sexy.

    Strat / Quant guys - Yeah, the work is good, place too is interesting. Its more about mathematics, finance and some basic analysis in groups. Interviews were more focused on probability and logical reasoning than coding. Pay is sexy.