Tek.Xam: Huh?

While researching a possible ’08 presidential candidate, Mark Warner at OnTheIssues.net, I saw he supported something called “Tek.Xam – a standard test for technology employment.” I wondered what this was so I searched and found tekxam.com. I laughed a little as I clicked through each of the “pages”; every page was actually a huge image, aobut 150KB in size. There’s no excuse for this, especially when each page has no more than 5 paragraphs of text.

That was pretty crappy but it got worse when I tried to take the sample quiz. The page was created in ASP but the webserver wasn’t IIS (it was Apache) nor was it configured for ASP so you can see all the code. After that chuckle (this is a tech aptitude test website afterall) I decided to check out the code on the grading page.

The code was a trip! While the entire page is pure ASP, the ASP engine was called to stop and start 5 times and there was also some non-sensical debugging commands. Keeping track of the correct answers was alright (though since q1 & so on were only used once, they could have just been incorporated into the if statements without prior variable assignment) but then I saw this….

<%if (correctanswers=>0) and (correctanswers<1) then
     Response.Redirect "result-0.htm"
    end if
    if (correctanswers=>1) and (correctanswers<2) then
     Response.Redirect "result-1.htm"
    end if
     and so on...

What kind of logic is that? And has this person never heard of elseif? I just wonder, could this page have been coded any worse?

Chrissy is a PowerShell MVP who has worked in IT for nearly 20 years, and currently serves as a Sr. Database Engineer in Belgium. Always an avid scripter, she attended the Monad session at Microsoft’s Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles back in 2005 and has worked and played with PowerShell ever since. Chrissy is currently pursuing an MS in Systems Engineering at Regis University and helps maintain RealCajunRecipes.com in her spare time. She holds a number of certifications, including those relating to SQL Server, SuSE Linux, SharePoint and network security. She recently became co-lead of the SQL PASS PowerShell Virtual Chapter. You can follow her on Twitter at @cl.

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2 comments on “Tek.Xam: Huh?
  1. mistergee says:

    Hi There,

    I came across your site while looking for a script and got distracted by this article (thanks …!!) so had to go and have a look for a giggle – well guess what, they’ve been working on the code ? Now when you complete the test and click “grade me” you get … “The requested method POST is not allowed for the URL /hcih/grade.asp”. Ah well ….

    I like your site – well done !

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