More on Interviewing Coders

Well, what you?re mainly looking for, or what we were mainly looking for and what I think most people probably ought to be looking for when they hire programmers, is to find people who really love to program because not just for programming, but for anything, to be really good at something you have to love to do it. And so anybody who loves to program, is probably not going to be content with whatever random stuff they?re told to do at work. They?re probably going to have some great project of their own that they?re working on.

So it?s not so much you care about what the particular project is. What you care about is that they have one and that they?re really into it. It almost doesn?t matter what it is. I mean it?s cool if it?s something interesting, especially if it?s related to the kind of thing you want to hire them to do, but that doesn?t matter. The main thing that matters is that they love to code.

ITConversations Inteview with Paul Graham