Thursday, February 29, 2024

Grokking The Coding Interview Book

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Heap / Priority Queue / Binary Heap

GROKKING the CODING INTERVIEW review || Best FAANG interview prep?
  • visualized as a tree, but is usually linear in storage
  • )
  • getmax – returns the max item, without removing it
  • getsize – return number of elements stored
  • isempty – returns true if heap contains no elements
  • extractmax – returns the max item, removing it
  • siftdown – needed for extractmax
  • remove – removes item at index x
  • heapify – create a heap from an array of elements, needed for heapsort
  • heap_sort – take an unsorted array and turn it into a sorted array in-place using a max heap or min heap
  • Best For Abstract Problems: Grokking The Coding Interview

    Grokking the Coding Interview is a course that gives you the ability to map a new problem to an already known problem. Throughout the course, you will learn 16 different patterns for coding questions, based on the similarities in the techniques needed to solve them. The idea behind this concept is that once you are familiar with one of the patterns, you’ll be able to solve dozens of problems with it. This is helpful because, during the real technical interview, you will most definitely be getting a question you have never seen before. Being able to apply your knowledge and work through these abstract problems with little to no detail is what will get you through the coding interview. This resource is better than other books like programming interviews exposed and programming pearls because it gets right to the point. Grokking is a great resource for people just starting out.

    Try Out Mock Coding Interviews

    Coding right in front of your interviewer can be a nerve-wracking experience especially if you have never done it before – which is why getting hands-on experience is so important. is currently the best mock technical interview resource in the market. It allows you to book mock coding interviews with real Google and Facebook engineers, albeit anonymously. You could even book interviews for specific roles like Mobile, Front End, Engineering Management. Even better – if you want to have an easier transition into real world coding interview – you could view recorded interviews and see what phone interviews are like.

    Moreover, if you were to do very well on your mock interviews, you will be able to unlock the “jobs page” which allows you to book interviews directly with top companies like Uber, Lyft, Quora, Asana and more. I’ve used both as an interviewer and an interviewee and found the experience to be excellent.

    Read more about different mock coding interview platforms here.

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    Best Coding Interview Books In 2022

    Coding interview books are important now more than ever.

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average pay for a computer programmer is $86,550 per year.

    So if you want a piece of that pie, you need to come correct, ready and prepared for your coding interview.

    In addition books, were also recommending a couple coding interview courses to help you prepare.

    This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation if you buy something. Read my disclosure for more details.

    TLDR: 11 Best Coding Interview BooksWe picked out the best coding interview books based on these three criteria: Best Overall

    Cracking the Coding Interview is considered the Holy Grail of coding interview books.

    And for good reason.

    Created by software engineer and former interviewer Gayle Laakmann McDowell, this book has just about everything youll need to pass the coding interview.

    The first part of the book examines the soft skills needed to charm and influence interviewers.

    Then youll dive into 189 coding interview questions that are asked at actual interviews.

    There are solution walkthroughs for each question. In addition, youll learn about 5 strategies to tackle algorithm questions.

    The core topics covered include:

    • data structures
    • algorithms

    Most answers are presented in the Java programming language. So if youre not familiar with Java, this book probably wont be of much use.

    This way youll learn the techniques on how to solve these problems yourself.

    Grokking Dynamic Programming Patterns For Coding Interviews

    Grokking The Object Oriented Design Interview

    This is the third course I have chosen from Educative for programmers preparing for coding interview and thats because Educative really have the best collection of coding interview courses. This course tackles another difficult topic of Dynamic Programming from coding interviews.If you dont know Dynamic Programming is a technique to solve complex problems by breaking them down into smaller similar problems. It uses Recursion and Memoization to solve individual parts to eventually solve the bigger problem, but its not easy to master.This course will give you all the knowledge you need to master Dynamic Programming and you will learn by solving the most popular dynamic programming problem from interviews so that you are ready to solve them when you really need them.

    Read Also: How To Crack Servicenow Interview

    Best Programming Interview Books In 2022

    This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation if you buy something. Read my disclosure for more details.

    TLDR: 12 Best Programming Interview Books This Year

    This post is brought to you by tutorial hell.

    Its easy to find programming interview courses and other online resources.

    But where are all the awesome programming interview books?

    Right here.

    The Algorithm Design Manual focuses on the design of algorithms, not analysis.

    Its separated into two parts:

    Practical Algorithm Design: Here youll gain insight on methods for designing and analyzing computer algorithms.

    Hitchhikers Guide to Algorithms: And this is a catalog of algorithmic resources and implementations.

    There are hundreds of problems and full-color illustrations.

    In addition, theres full online support with lectures, slides and videos.

    With 189 programming questions and solutions, Cracking the Coding Interview is like the holy grail of programming interview books.

    Problems range from beginner to advanced.

    And for each problem theres a walkthrough of the solution. In addition, there are hints on how to solve the problems if you get stuck.

    Most of these problems are in Java. So if youre not proficient in Java, Cracking the Coding Interview wont be of much use.

    What Is A Software Engineering Coding Interview

    Coding interviews are a form of technical interviews used to access a potential software engineer candidate’s competencies through presenting them with programming problems. Typically, coding interviews have a focus on data structures and algorithms, while other technical rounds may encompass system design .

    A coding interview round is typically 30 – 45 minutes. You will be given a technical question by the interviewer, and will be expected to write code in a real-time collaborative editor such as CodePen or CoderPad or on a whiteboard to solve the problem within 3045 minutes.

    Read Also: How To Ace The Interview And Get The Job

    Where Did This Opinion Form

    From experience. When I was preparing for my Google interview, I did CTCI front to back. During medium/hard leetcode problems, I would frequently ask myself How the hell was I supposed to know that trick?. I showed up to my onsite interview and got my butt kicked.

    A year later, after switching to studying the Algorithm Design Manual and adding some more structure to my studying, I got offers from Google & FB. I felt like I was in complete control of my interviews. I would not have gotten to that point if I didnt nail the fundamentals. To see the stark difference for yourself, compare the chapters on Big O in both books.

    Algorithmic Complexity / Big

    Grokking Algorithms | Book Review
    • Nothing to implement here, you’re just watching videos and taking notes! Yay!
    • There are a lot of videos here. Just watch enough until you understand it. You can always come back and review.
    • Don’t worry if you don’t understand all the math behind it.
    • You just need to understand how to express the complexity of an algorithm in terms of Big-O.
    • Skiena:
  • Implement a vector :
  • Practice coding using arrays and pointers, and pointer math to jump to an index instead of using indexing.
  • New raw data array with allocated memory
  • can allocate int array under the hood, just not use its features
  • start with 16, or if starting number is greater, use power of 2 – 16, 32, 64, 128
  • size – number of items
  • capacity – number of items it can hold
  • isempty
  • at – returns item at given index, blows up if index out of bounds
  • push
  • insert – inserts item at index, shifts that index’s value and trailing elements to the right
  • prepend – can use insert above at index 0
  • pop – remove from end, return value
  • delete – delete item at index, shifting all trailing elements left
  • remove – looks for value and removes index holding it
  • find – looks for value and returns first index with that value, -1 if not found
  • resize // private function
  • when you reach capacity, resize to double the size
  • when popping an item, if size is 1/4 of capacity, resize to half
  • Time
  • O to add/remove at end , index, or update
  • O to insert/remove elsewhere
  • Space
  • contiguous in memory, so proximity helps performance
  • Don’t Miss: What Are Some Questions To Ask After An Interview

    Practice With Mock Interviews

    The steps mentioned above can be rehearsed over and over again until you have fully internalized them and they become second nature to you. A good way to practice is by partnering with a friend and taking turns to interview each other.

    A great resource for preparing for coding interviews is This platform provides free and anonymous practice interviews with Google and Facebook engineers, which can lead to real jobs and internships.

    Doing well in mock interviews will unlock the jobs page for candidates, and allow them to book interviews with top companies like Uber, Lyft, Quora, Asana, and more. For those who are new to coding interviews, a demo interview can be viewed on this site. Note that this site requires users to sign in.

    I have used, both as an interviewer and an interviewee. The experience was great. Aline Lerner, the CEO and co-founder of, and her team are passionate about revolutionizing the process for coding interviews and helping candidates improve their interview skills.

    She has also published a number of coding interview-related articles on the blog. I recommend signing up as early as possible with, even though it’s in beta, to increase the likelihood of receiving an invite.

    Grokking The System Design Interview

    This is actually the first and probably the best course I have seen on Educative. Created by Design Guru this course tackles the topic of System design. If you have attended coding interviews then you may know that dealing with System design questions is not easy, especially if you dont have much experience in real-world software development.Things like caching, scalability, fault-tolerance, Microservices, database design are essential to design software but not easy to master. This course provides an excellent introduction to all the things you can keep in mind while designing a new system like a website, an application, or just an app.This interactive course is a must if you want to crack the coding interview but even if you are not preparing for an interview, you will learn a lot about software architect and design by going through this course which will eventually make you a better programmer.

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    How To Rock The Coding Interview Tips That Helped Me Land Job Offers From Google Airbnb And Dropbox

    Back in 2017, I went through some coding interviews and got offers from several large tech companies. So at that point, I decided to share what I’d learned in this article.

    And I’ve just updated it for 2022 so it’ll be super useful and relevant if you’re job hunting now.

    Despite scoring decent grades in both my CS101 Algorithm class and my Data Structures class in university, I shudder at the thought of going through a coding interview that focuses on algorithms.

    Hence I spent the last three months figuring out how to improve my coding interview skills and eventually received offers from big tech companies like Google, Facebook, Airbnb, Lyft, Dropbox and more.

    In this post, Ill be sharing the insights and tips I gained along the way. Experienced candidates can also expect System Design questions, but that is out of the scope of this post.

    Many of the algorithmic concepts tested in coding interviews are not what I usually use at work, where I am a Front End Engineer . Naturally, I have forgotten quite a bit about these algorithms and data structures, which I learned mostly during my freshmen and sophomore years of college.

    Its stressful to have to produce code in an interview, while someone scrutinizes every keystroke that you make. Whats worse is that as an interviewee, youre encouraged to communicate your thought process out loud to the interviewer.

    At companies like Facebook and Google, the people are software engineers first, domain experts second.

    Best For Community: Hackpack

    Grokking The Object Oriented Design Interview

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    Hackpack is the most hyperactive community of engineers studying for programming interviews. If you are reading this article then you already know how isolating and frustrating the coding interview process is. This community was created as a place for engineers to vent, stay on track, and fight burnout. You submit daily check-ins on what you are studying, do mock interviews, and work through tough problems together.

    Hackpack is a way to hold yourself accountable and make sure you are staying on the right path. It is a stressful period when all you are doing is studying interview questions for your coding interview and having a community to fall back on can ensure you stay on track.

    You May Like: How To Prepare For Amazon Product Manager Interview

    Elements Of Programming Interviews In Python

    Maybe C++ isnt your thing? In that case, theres Elements of Programming Interviews in Python.

    Similar to the other books in the Elements of Programming Interviews series, this covers over 250 problems and solutions. But in Python.

    Youll start by learning tips about the coding interview such as:

    • getting ready
    • strategies for a great interview
    • conducting in an interview

    Then youll move on to working on problems related to data structures and algorithms:

    • primitive types

    And much, MUCH more.

    Within the problems youll find over 200 figures.

    Each chapter in the book contains a case study, coding interview tips and a review of library methods.

    Is Java your preferred language for coding interviews?

    The third and final book in the Elements of Programming Interviews series presents all answers in Java.

    The content is identical to the other books, the only difference being the programming language. Youll still find the same 250 coding interview problems and solutions.

    In addition, there are 200 figures to accompany these problems.

    First youll learn about the non-technical aspects of interviewing such as coding interview prep and strategies of a successful interview.

    Then with over 400 pages, youll move onto practicing problems with basic and advanced data structures.

    In addition, youll work with:

    • searching

    Coding Interview Questions by Narasimha Karumanchi is intended to present coding interview problems in a clear, straightforward way.

    It covers interview questions on:

    Combine Studying And Practicing For A Single Topic

    For the sake of memory retention and efficiency, it is best to study for a single concept and then immediately do relevant practice questions for that topic.

    Fortunately, there are already excellent coding interview preparation resources which enable you to do this very easily and systematically:


    Apart from helping you master important coding interview data structures and algorithm questions through practice and easy to understand guides, AlgoMonster has the added perk of synthesizing common interview question patterns that you could apply to solve any other questions you have never encountered before. Made by Google engineers, this is definitely a quality platform to use as compared to the unstructured nature of LeetCode grinding. Data structures and algorithms questions are covered in all the common languages – Python, Java, C#, JavaScript, C++, Golang, and more. Join today for a 70% discount

    Grokking the Coding Interview: Patterns for Coding Questions

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    Best For Quick Coding Problems: Leetcode

    Leetcode is an obvious resource when studying for programming interviews. There are over 2,300 interview questions to help you practice for your next coding interview. This includes detailed guides on dynamic programming, operating systems, advanced data structures , and problems related to specific tech companies. This is one of the most popular coding interview resources and for good reason, there is a variety of topics and questions to choose from.

    You can also use your preferred programming language to ensure you are getting the most hands-on experience.

    Surviving The Whiteboard Interview

    Grokking Dynamic Programming for Coding Interviews

    Surviving the Whiteboard Interview by William Gant addresses many of the fears we have about coding interviews such as public speaking and coding interview questions.

    But it aims to quell those fears by getting you prepared to the maximum for your coding interview.

    First youll learn about psychological roadblocks at whiteboard interviews. Then youll learn how to overcome those roadblocks.

    In addition, youll learn about some soft skills youll need to entice the interviewers. Plus youll learn how to spruce up your resume.

    But most importantly, youll learn how to get through and pass your whiteboard interview.

    Also Check: What Questions Can You Not Ask In An Interview

    Best Coding Interview Books: Conclusion

    Today we looked at 11 of the best coding interview books we could find.

    And from there, we picked our three favorites:

    Best Overall

    So whether youre looking for a coding interview book based on budget, XP or best quality, we think theres a coding interview book for everyone.

    Up next:

  • What are the best coding interview books?

    We picked three of the best coding interview books based on the following criteria. For the best overall, we recommend Cracking the Coding Interview. For newbies, we recommend Programming Interviews Exposed. And for the best value, we think Elements of Programming Interviews in Java is the way to go.

  • Is the Programming Interviews Exposed worth it?

    We think Programming Interviews Exposed is worth it. In addition to coding problems and solutions, you’ll get a thorough walkthrough of each solution. This way you’ll learn the techniques on how to solve these problems yourself. You’ll work on classic coding interview questions based on data structures and algorithms. However, you’ll also work on newer topics covering probability, data science and statistics.

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