Cracking the C, C++ and Java Interview – Book Review

This review is for the three chapters related to Java from the book “Cracking the C, C++ and Java Interview” by S G Ganesh. Buy from Flipkart.com or Amazon.com

Book overview

This book categorizes the interview questions based on the type of question and the level of difficulty. As the title indicates the book covers C, C++ and Java languages. Additionally there are chapters on Data Structures and Object Oriented Programming.

There are three types of questions namely, Multiple choice questions, Aptitude questions and Theory questions.

There are five difficulty levels and the author describes them as follows: “Level 1 to 3 questions are simpler ones meant for students and novice programmers; level 3 to 5 are meant for programmers with more than a year’s experience”.

According to the author the primary target audience is students and programmers appearing for entry level technical interviews.

Book Review

The strong point of this book is the explanation of concepts behind the questions. The explanation is simple and easy to understand. This is not only useful for the target audience but also for experienced programmers who have to interview candidates.

The three types of questions would really be helpful for students and beginners since it allows them to understand the same topic from different perspectives.

On the flip side, there are numerous questions whose answers are “Compiler Error”. With modern programming development environments (IDE) these problems are highlighted as soon as a programmer types something wrong. And as interview questions these do not tell anything about the candidate.

And there are some irrelevant questions such as “Which programming language did not influence Java?” and “what is the output for ++i++?” These kind of questions do not enhance knowledge nor are they relevant in real world situations.

Lastly I found that there are more questions on Garbage collection than on Collections API or Multi-Threading. Even simple college projects would involve Collections and Multi-Threading in some way or the other, so it would be good to include more coverage for them.

Conclusion

The Java section of the book does have its highlights but there is considerable scope for improvement. I would definitely suggest better ‘level assignment’ for the questions and also define the target audience more precisely. For candidates with 2-4 years’ experience, the coverage of Collections, Threads and other OO concepts needs to be enhanced.

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