Interview Cake Review

Hey you all, I’ve been meaning to write a review about Interview Cake. Just to leave my feedback. I’ve solved/read through all of the 46 questions. There does not appear to be any unsponsored reviews from what I’ve researched, so here goes.

Disclaimer: I am in no way being paid for this review and I am not affiliated with the company.

*Before you even conceive of purchasing an Interview Cake subscription, make sure you’ve already taken a course on Data Structures and Algorithms. I also recommend that you implement all the major algorithms in your target programming language. As in the video below, I finally recommend that you do not use Interview Cake as your sole resource of study. I recommend Codewars.com and Leetcode.com as well.

As you all have seen, I’ve used this site on and off for the past few months now. Thanks to an amazing individual, I didn’t have to pay for it. I just shared her account. Normally, what I do when solving a question is read through it, then I write it down and attempt to solve it, then I read through the solution on my own to understand it, then I go to pythontutor.com and visualize it, until I understand it, then I move on. Now, here we go:

The Good

 

  1. The site has a plethora of high quality and popular interview questions. I’m sure a good amount of them are from Google/Facebook.
  2. The site shows you many ways of how to solve a single algorithm. First they give you a question to solve, then as you attempt to solve it, you can decide to view hint after hint until they finally give you the answer.
  3. They give you free sample questions to try out before you buy. You can also sign up for a weekly email subscription to get more.
  4. They have a section to learn Big O with plenty of examples and they have language specific questions you can choose from.
  5. If you purchase the full subscription, you can get a refund any time if you are not satisfied.
  6. It’s great for all levels of experience. Whether you’ve been coding for 3 months or 30 years.
  7. Questions have a storyline, humor, and are somewhat relatable at times. They get very creative with the questions. This site can honestly be a book.
  8. I have so much respect for this course. The explanations go much deeper than Cracking the Coding Interview.
  9. They give you bonuses at the end of each question for those who are extra curious.

The Bad

  1. Unnecessary questions: 5 Sided die, word_cloud, single riffle shuffle, Find repeat
  2. There is no test input given to the subscriber. For example in Find Repeat, I was especially lost because the sample input was supposed to be very specific (the length of the array) but the wording of the question led me to believe I could test any input.
  3. Some questions are way too long. I think the longest was URL shortener. Do companies really get that specific? That one question would take you over an hour to really design out and understand the descriptions.
  4. A lot of the variables/iterators are very long. For example, for an iterator people normally use “i” or a single word, here are two iterators I’ve seen in the last few questions: “permutation_of_all_chars_except_last” and “index_we_are_choosing_for”.  Um..can you image that in a for loop? Another recent variable I’ve seen is “distint_possible_integers_in_lower_range”…..that’s one variable. It’s descriptive, I understand, but sometimes it’s difficult to keep up when many of the variables sound the same and are too long.
  5. Not many graph questions.
  6. It costs $99. Some people can’t afford this.

Overall, I believe it is worth it. The questions are great quality and it’s much needed along with your other interview prep. You will learn a lot, especially if you haven’t studied CS formally. Give it a shot. If you don’t like it, just email Parker, the founder, and he’ll refund you your money. Also, do not just rely on Interview Cake. Solve other interview questions on CodeWars and LeetCode in between. Because the questions are so detailed, it’s easy to lose focus and get jaded. Use Pythontutor.com. Let me know if you have any questions.

Good Luck!

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