17 Former Google Interview Questions So Ridiculous Even Google Banned Them

Sometimes the hiring practices of even the biggest and most successful companies can be outright ridiculous.

There can be bizarre interview questions that seemingly have no answers. There can be standards — like not hiring anyone who attended a college outside of the Ivy League — that will knock candidates out of the race before they even approach the starting line.

Google used to be the shining example of these practices. It had high standards and asked silly questions.

The questions were so nuts that they were eventually banned from being asked. That’s right, banned.

In 2009, Seattle job coach Lewis Lin put together a list of 140 questions his clients were asked by Google. We’ve picked out some of the wildest and added a link to the whole list at the end.

Future Google employees should be grateful these questions are no longer on the table.

How much should you charge to wash all the windows in Seattle?

Why are manhole covers round?

You need to check that your friend, Bob, has your correct phone number, but you cannot ask him directly...

... You must write the question on a card and give it to Eve who will take the card to Bob and return the answer to you. What must you write on the card, besides the question, to ensure Bob can encode the message so that Eve cannot read your phone number?

How many piano tuners are there in the entire world?

Every man in a village of 100 married couples has cheated on his wife...

... Every wife in the village instantly knows when a man other than her husband has cheated, but does not know when her own husband has. The village has a law that does not allow for adultery. Any wife who can prove that her husband is unfaithful must kill him that very day. The women of the village would never disobey this law. One day, the queen of the village visits and announces that at least one husband has been unfaithful. What happens?

How many times a day does a clock's hands overlap?

How many vacuums are made per year in USA?

If a person dials a sequence of numbers on the telephone, what possible words/strings can be formed from the letters associated with those numbers?

You are shrunk to the height of a nickel and your mass is proportionally reduced so as to maintain your original density. You are then thrown into an empty glass blender. The blades will start moving in 60 seconds. What do you do?

You have two eggs and get access to a one-hundred-story building...

... Eggs can be very hard or very fragile means it may break if dropped from the first floor or may not even break if dropped from 100th floor. Both eggs are identical. You need to figure out the highest floor of a 100-story building an egg can be dropped without breaking. The question is how many drops you need to make. You are allowed to break 2 eggs in the process.

Explain a database in three sentences to your eight-year-old nephew.

Now check out some of the answers to these questions!

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