Hiring guide for Informix-4GL Engineers

Informix-4GL Developer Hiring Guide

Informix-4GL is a programming language and procedural runtime environment that was first developed by Informix Corporation in the early 1980s. It was designed for business applications development, offering a simple way to design forms and reports. Unlike other fourth-generation programming languages (4GL), Informix-4GL is not database-independent and works best with Informix's SQL products. Despite its age, it remains in use today due to its robustness, efficiency, and ease of learning. This information can be found on IBM's official website as well as various historical software archives.

Ask the right questions secure the right Informix-4GL talent among an increasingly shrinking pool of talent.

First 20 minutes

General Informix-4GL app knowledge and experience

The first 20 minutes of the interview should seek to understand the candidate's general background in Informix-4GL application development, including their experience with various programming languages, databases, and their approach to designing scalable and maintainable systems.

How would you define Informix-4GL?
Informix-4GL is a 4th generation programming language developed by IBM for database management. It is used for developing database-centric applications.
What are the key features of Informix-4GL?
Some key features include its high-level language, portability, embedded SQL, and its ability to create complex reports.
Describe the difference between Informix-4GL and SQL.
Informix-4GL is a high-level programming language that embeds SQL statements, while SQL is a standard language for managing data held in a relational database.
How would you handle errors in Informix-4GL?
Informix-4GL provides an error handling mechanism using the WHENEVER statement. It allows the program to continue, exit, or go to a label when an error or warning occurs.
What are the data types supported by Informix-4GL?
Informix-4GL supports various data types including CHAR, SMALLINT, INTEGER, FLOAT, DECIMAL, DATE, MONEY, and BYTE.
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What you’re looking for early on

Does the candidate have a strong understanding of Informix-4GL?
Has the candidate demonstrated problem-solving skills?
Is the candidate able to communicate effectively?
Does the candidate have experience with other programming languages?

Next 20 minutes

Specific Informix-4GL development questions

The next 20 minutes of the interview should focus on the candidate's expertise with specific backend frameworks, their understanding of RESTful APIs, and their experience in handling data storage and retrieval efficiently.

How would you create a database in Informix-4GL?
You can create a database using the CREATE DATABASE statement followed by the database name.
Describe the difference between a function and a main procedure in Informix-4GL.
A main procedure is the entry point of a program, while a function is a reusable piece of code that performs a specific task and can be called from anywhere in the program.
What are the different types of variables in Informix-4GL?
Informix-4GL supports global variables, local variables, and record variables.
How would you implement a loop in Informix-4GL?
You can implement a loop using the FOR, WHILE, or FOREACH statement.
What are the different types of cursors in Informix-4GL?
Informix-4GL supports two types of cursors: update cursors and read-only cursors.
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The ideal back-end app developer

What you’re looking to see on the Informix-4GL engineer at this point.

At this point, a skilled Informix-4GL engineer should demonstrate strong problem-solving abilities, proficiency in Informix-4GL programming language, and knowledge of software development methodologies. Red flags include lack of hands-on experience, inability to articulate complex concepts, or unfamiliarity with standard coding practices.

Digging deeper

Code questions

These will help you see the candidate's real-world development capabilities with Informix-4GL.

What does this simple Informix-4GL code do?
  LET x = 10
  DISPLAY 'The value of x is', x
This code defines an integer variable 'x', assigns the value 10 to 'x', and then displays 'The value of x is 10' on the screen.
What will be the output of the following Informix-4GL code?
  DEFINE str CHAR(20)
  LET str = 'Informix'
This code defines a character variable 'str', assigns the string 'Informix' to 'str', and then displays the length of 'str'. So, the output will be '8'.
What does this Informix-4GL code do?
  FOR i = 1 TO 5
    LET arr[i] = i * 10
This code defines an array 'arr' of integers with 5 elements. It then assigns values to the array elements in a loop where each element is 10 times its index. Finally, it displays the array 'arr'.
What does this Informix-4GL code do?
  LET i = 1, j = 2
  CALL swap(i, j)
  DISPLAY i, j

FUNCTION swap(a, b)
  LET temp = a
  LET a = b
  LET b = temp
This code defines two integer variables 'i' and 'j', assigns values to them, and then calls a function 'swap' passing 'i' and 'j' as arguments. The 'swap' function swaps the values of 'a' and 'b'. However, since Informix-4GL passes parameters by value, the original variables 'i' and 'j' are not affected. So, the display statement will still show '1 2'.

Wrap-up questions

Final candidate for Informix-4GL Developer role questions

The final few questions should evaluate the candidate's teamwork, communication, and problem-solving skills. Additionally, assess their knowledge of microservices architecture, serverless computing, and how they handle Informix-4GL application deployments. Inquire about their experience in handling system failures and their approach to debugging and troubleshooting.

How would you handle transactions in Informix-4GL?
You can handle transactions using the BEGIN WORK, COMMIT WORK, and ROLLBACK WORK statements.
Describe the difference between a static array and a dynamic array in Informix-4GL.
A static array has a fixed size that is determined at compile time, while a dynamic array can change its size at runtime.
What are the different types of triggers in Informix-4GL?
Informix-4GL supports row triggers, statement triggers, and database triggers.

Informix-4GL application related

Product Perfect's Informix-4GL development capabilities

Beyond hiring for your Informix-4GL engineering team, you may be in the market for additional help. Product Perfect provides seasoned expertise in Informix-4GL projects, and can engage in multiple capacities.