Another Google Interview Story

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For those that enjoy it, here’s another job interview at Google story.

A selection:

my first interview was with a former nasa scientist-turned googler. my interview with him was fun and interesting; he proposed several real case studies and problems that they face in the print team. my second interview was with another engineer; he asked me basic questions and one brain teaser. the brain teaser goes something like this, if i remember it right:

you are at a party with a friend and 10 people are present including you and the friend. your friend makes you a wager that for every person you find that has the same birthday as you, you get $1; for every person he finds that does not have the same birthday as you, he gets $2. would you accept the wager?

i had fun trying to solve this one. the answer has to do with the number of days in the year and the probability the person’s birthday falls on the same day as mine (without replacement). i eventually solved it, but it took time learning how to apply probability with no replacement. i tried using 10! (factorial), for some reason, but that was totally the wrong approach. we ended the interview; i didn’t feel as good about that one, because i struggled a little bit through that brain teaser.

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Nathan Weinberg writes the popular InsideGoogle blog, offering the latest news and insights about Google and search engines.

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  • Stefan

    Well, there is a 1 in 365 chance that person 1 has the same birthday as you do. Same for person 2, person 3, etc.

    So for every person, you have a 2.7 % chance of getting $1, while your friend has 97.3 chance of getting $2 from you.

    Not a wager I would make.

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