Would you hire this Ruby on Rails developer

I had this interaction with somebody who applied for a job at Vinsol

What is disturbing here is the attitude of Indian developers towards contributing to open source projects, and belive me, this is fairly rampant. Contributing to open source projects matters more than your marks in school to us and to a lot of other companies around.


  1. K.. I’m confused, you’re Indian and you’re badmouthing your brethren?

    Anyways… Not being Indian, I can tell you with absolute certainty that your brethren take too much pride in that 3.5-4.0 grading scale, so you’re correct. School grades have too many variables to be looked at as legit… why then do your brethren consider it so valiantly? One big variable – grades can be manipulated – plagiarized, whatever. Working on a project by yourself or in a team is proof positive that you actually earned your way through school without copying your classmate’s sourcecode.

    To answer your question, I wouldn’t have wasted my time past his first response:
    “I sent this mail for job application.”
    You asked a question, which was responded with no answer – HUGE red flag indicating lack of communication skills and to throw this one away and move on. Actually, I think that’s kind of obvious….

  2. Hi Manik,

    This is a recurring problem, but I feel that it’s simply lack of exposure at the University level and then the wrong attitude of the company.As an entrepreneur I feel the responsibility to get this attitude right.

    This needs to be instilled by people like you and me who know what is Open source, how the OS projects run and how to contribute to it. Most of the students need a push to do it.We need to provide that Initial push.

    If you feel so bad about it, why not do something about it. I have gone and given demos of Ubuntu desktops, Ruby on Rails, to various meetups that had involved a lot of college students.There are dedicated people who do so. You can probably call bunch of college students and start with them, set a chain.I make sure that whoever joins my company has the right information regarding the open source projects and at least tries to contribute.

    Why sit and crib,and give others a chance to bash the “Indian” developers.Instead get up yourself and improve it.


  3. Haha, this is funny.

    Most Indian developers I have interviewed were shocked at the concept of contributing to open-source projects. They did not even realize that Rails is developed by volunteers for the love of programming.

    Agree with Patrick too. I too would have thrown out this application at his “I sent this mail for job application.”


  4. Well , with the IT boom in India there were hundreds of ENGG colleges brooming in India , and these colleges hired passed outs for teaching and professing .The result was that neither the tutor was exposed nor the student got any exposure . Even I had profs of 2-4 years of experience , but the good thing our college did was we had HOD and counselors for each dept which were retired professionals passed out from IITs strictly .

    The above mail you have attached is a clear example of the same . If we work for a company project which has a NDA etc etc , then we cant show the code , but the NDA never says you cant extract the code and contribute , by putting it up on GIT or somewhere . Besides not many companies encourage to do also as even the professionals in those companies are not actually professionals but Engineers.

    It needs a change in attitude and that can only be changed by motivation .

    I personally dont know what else is the other way to solve this .

    This is what I do , having worked in a company which was backed by heavy social networking hence I always like to use those skills , mashups of twitter with FB and GIT . using Delicious and posting on Twitter and FB . Blogging etc .

    Besides whenever I write a piece of code I try to blog about it using scribe fire or atleast draft it so that I can do that later .Also I like making a new app when something big like adding a third party into the app is taking place and then moving the code in the app , doing so I have a pure app which I can put on heroku or GIT and share .

    have Fun!
    Piyush Gupta

  5. Well that is how you differentiate between good and bad developers.

    If every young indian Btech passout will suddenly become street smart, interested in FOSS way of coding/contribution etc then employers will have a tuff time choosing between them.

    So hire the best, dump the rest, feel lucky & stay happy 🙂

  6. well, i guess there is nothing as sort of “your brethren” thing anywhere.. there are lot many people who are even worse..this guy in discussion is just another example.. and its not about bad mouthing any one in particular..its about asking employees not to commit these kind of mistakes…thats it..

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