Monday, July 25, 2011

Aspergers Software Engineers: a 12 question list by Joel Spolsky that you should use

For those of you in software development who are looking for a way to determine if a place is good to work for or with, I suggest you look at the Joel Test created by Joel Spolsky.  While not oriented towards Aspergers or ASD specifically it does address a major concern that many of us have regarding a workplace; namely, does it aim to produce something that we can be proud of. If there is one unifying thing I have noticed about ASD folk in software development is that we hate putting out schlock.

Joel's test focuses on asking questions about whether the tools and material are present in a company to produce quality software. Even non-software Aspies can identify some of the questions as useful: do you have quality testers? do you have a product specification? Seriously, some software shops are so bad that these would be revolutionary questions. The most appealing question for ASD folk would be: do people have a quiet working atmosphere?

So those of you in IT, the next time you go to interview, take these questions along and check them off as they are answered in the interview or ask them when it is your turn to interview them. Asking questions in the interview is strongly encouraged and here are ready made questions for you that will at least give you an idea if it is a good place to work for you.

And if you are not in IT, consider how they may apply to your own job hunt or check back here... I hope to have my own 12 question check list for Aspies that I shamelessly admit was inspired by Joel's questions.

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