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Re: Splitting P&P templates into two

Jay Berkenbilt writes,

> I think I spent about 16 hours total on all the
> questions.  I did them in small chunks over one week.

For my part, I think I spent about 120 hours total on
all the questions, including assigned practical
exercises.  I did them in small chunks over four months.

This is just another datum, to those whom it interests.
Some of the applicants like Jay are probably smarter
than I am, or have education or professional background
in computer programming (mine both lie elsewhere).

An NM applicant, even one in the outbound queue,
necessarily has a limited perspective and thus hesitates
to offer views in this forum; so please take or leave
the following as seems wise to you.  Were I asked, I
would tend to say that 120 hours of answering questions
were not too much to expect of an applicant.  In fact it
might be too little.  In such a context, Helen's idea
makes sense to me.  Helen's idea would effectively
screen against meteors, against the brilliant but brief.

I would be interested to learn how much time my AM spent
on my application, incidentally.  I would guess more
than 16 hours.

One further question, just for curiosity.  In your
experience, who has more overall knowledge in computing:
the typical computer-science degree holder or the
typical DD?  Many DDs have computer-related degrees, of
course, but this is not what I mean.  The reason I ask
is because while studying electrical engineering at the
University of Idaho about 1997, a friend of mine
studying computer engineering there claimed that I knew
more about computers than most of his classmates
did---and indeed, the one senior-level course I took
there in computer science, I finished first of forty, so
there may have been some merit in the friend's view.
However, I have had very little formal computer-science
training, and my professional background runs far away
in building construction.  Galileo, Heaviside and
Faraday were amateurs, too ("amateur", from the Latin,
one who does for the love of it), so maybe this is okay,
but I am no Faraday and I know it.  In fact it has
become clear to me that most of the successful NM
applicants are smarter and more computer-scientific than
I am (recall: I needed 120 hours against Jay's 16).
Thus the question: is Debian relatively as elite as it
seems to be?  If so, why is this?

Thaddeus H. Black
508 Nellie's Cave Road
Blacksburg, Virginia 24060, USA
+1 540 961 0920, t@b-tk.org

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