I have read that at a lot of companies you have to write code at an interview. On the one hand I see that it makes sense to ask for a work sample. On the other hand: What kind of code do you expect to be written in 5 minutes? And what if they tell me "Write an algorithm that does this and that" but I cannot think of a smart solution or even write code that doesn't semantically work?
I am particularly interested in that question because I do not have that much commercial programming experience, 2 years part-time, one year full-time. (But I am interested in programming languages since nearly 15 years though usually I was more concentrated in playing with the language rather than writing large applications...) And actually I consider my debugging and problem solving skills much better than my coding skills. I sometimes see myself not writing the most beautiful code when looking back, but on the other hand I often come up with solutions for hard problems. And I think I am very good at optimizing, fixing, restructuring existing code, but I have problems with writing new applications from scratch. The software design sucks... ;-)
Therefore I don't feel comfortable when thinking about this code writing situation at an interview...
So what do the interviewers expect? What kind of information about my code writing are they interested in?