I am reminded of an episode written by Le Guin in which a teacher refused to examine the class. The class protested, "In which case how will we know who are the good students and who the bad?" The teacher replied, "Surely you already know who are the good students."
On the whole, I think we know who the good programmers are, the trick is generally finding people who are both good and available for hire, and who haven't succumbed to the lure of insultancy. So I should clarify: What was made known to me was not that this person was good - I knew that already - but that he is interested, which I did not.
In other news, my name is on a patent application. I've not been much involved in the paperwork to date; I'm sure that I will have to do a thorough review at some point and wrap my head around the torturous language employed nowadays.