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Quiz me on mechanics, help me land a job

  1. Dec 11, 2014 #1
    I've got a technical job interview tomorrow for a robotics related position. I have asked to prepare for questions as follows.

    "I would prepare to be comfortable answering questions on programming fundamentals and standard practices, including memory management, algorithms, and object-oriented programming. On the physical side, expect questions about dynamics and forces (including free-body diagrams and spring-mass-damper), motors, and kinematics."

    If anyone is feeling awesome and wants super karma blessings from heaven, pretend you are the interviewer and throw out some questions. I'll do my best to answer them and maybe get some feedback.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 11, 2014 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    First make sure you know what you wrote on your resume, if you mention a project make sure you can explain it briefly and clearly outlining any key points.

    They may ask what was your most interesting project or your most difficult one and how did you overcome your issues...

    Next sometimes they ask stock questions so I've posted some docs that may have things to know, I'd skim them all looking for interesting

    Dr Dobbs always had good articles on programming questions may be a bit specialized and deep:


    Some C++ questions:


    Some programming questions for java:


    One trick is to not sweat, be confident and to talk it through with the interviewer as you're writing it on the board.

    Ask about shortcuts you can make in the algorithm. You want to show how you analyze things. It really doesn't
    matter if its not perfect but that you notice and fix any mistakes you make.

    Sorting algorithms are common questions so know about the bubble sort its the easiest one to implement. There are others
    to be familiar with:

  4. Dec 11, 2014 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    Hopefully, one knows something about the company (and it's products/services), it's research and key individuals (from journal articles or conference proceedings). Is one a member of IEEE?


    Also, it helps to know about the industry and where things are going, and how one can contribute to the company and its success.
  5. Dec 15, 2014 #4


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I had similar interviews.

    A lot of the questions I got were not straight forward and not something you would get in school.
    Instead of "write a function that does X" it would be "if the robot should do X, and it does Y, what could be wrong"

    I was talking about a project I worked on with a quadrotor UAV. I was asked
    -if you lose connection with the UAV, what will happen with the current design. If the current response is not preferable, what could you change
    -what will happen if a motor fails. Given the time, how would you design a failure detection and correction system
    -what could you have done better

    that being said, I would be 100% sure you know the basics of everything that you mentioned above.
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