Often when I read Hacker News, I’m be taken by an insightful comment, and only afterward glance at the author and see that it was written by edw519. He has a voice that sounds of wisdom and decades of experience in the software business.
By popular demand, edw519 decided to compile his best comments and sell them as a book. Recently, he published the contents for free reading on his blog.
There’s a table of contents, so you can look for a question that intrigues you and see what he has to say about it. Unfortunately the table of contents is just text and not links, so then you have to scroll down and find the particular question. But you can find it pretty quickly by doing a (Ctrl-F) find on the first few words of the question you’re interested in.
Here’s a sample of his writing, to give you a sense of what you can expect:
What are employers looking for?
When I hire, I’m not looking for a person or a resource. I’m looking for a solution to my problem. Sometimes that problem is big, sometimes it’s urgent. But there’s always a problem needing to be solved. The more a candidate looks like a solution to my problem, the closer to the front of the pile he/she gets.
As far as I’m concerned, the most important thing for any candidate to do is to identify my problem(s) and present themselves as the solution. [...]
The tricky part for any candidate is the research. How do you find out what my problems are? Ask! Ask me. Ask someone else in the company. Ask anyone. The simple act of research shows that you’re a serious candidate. The follow up with a solution to my problem puts you at the top of my list.
If you’re right out of school or don’t have a lot of experience, you should still do this. You may not have as long a resume as others, but you have every bit as much to offer to solve my problems. Maybe a smart person who works hard and knows how to deliver is just what I need. You must find that out and present yourself as such. Remember, it’s about my problem, not yours. [...]