Of course, this assumes that a trial (say, 30 days) can give a lot more information about the long-term potential of the candidate than a day-long interview, which feels like a reasonable assumption to me.
I'm not wholly disappointed, because 1) I finally got around to using vi, spending a solid week using it and only it, as my homework for the company, and 2) you don't want to work someone that only hires clones of themselves.
 They didn't assign it to me, but I'm always looking for something interesting to do, and since I was serious about wanting to work for them I did it to ease my eventual on-boarding.
Be happy you don't work there.
The industry wants hordes of people who color by number with the newest frameworks, not hackers.
I didn't provide evidence, but did point out what I see as a smoking gun, which is the trend of temp-to-perm hiring.
Temp-to-perm is not conventional hiring; if you do it, you are not hiring the way AmaGooBookSoft hires. That you would do it at all suggests that the conventional hiring process isn't effective.
At the same time, temp-to-perm makes it harder to find people; it (almost) has to, since asking a candidate to accept a monthlong (or even weeklong) contract is onerous. People forget that candidates often interview at multiple companies; a week off work seems reasonable when you don't consider that it's a process that might repeat 2, 3, or 4 times for a given candidate.
There is clearly evidence that the entire hiring process leaves much to be desired. Temp-to-perm is obviously not ideal. I'm just wondering whether the problem is that companies are relying on the temp-to-perm pattern in lieu of better available alternatives, or if the temp-to-perm pattern is simply the best option because there is genuinely a short supply of experienced, easily recognizable talent.
(We will occasionally hire an ex-contractor, but that's the exception and they were genuinely a contactor first. No one comes through the front do applying for a full-time position and gets offered a contract-to-hire.)
Basically, in a 300 mile radius around Washington D.C. there is apparently a shit ton of little, bullshit consulting agencies. There are at least two in even the small towns. Bullshit consulting agencies are the type I'd expect to do contract-for-hire.
It's also, for no reason I understand, the only types of places that would ever look at my resume. Perhaps that is because the alternatives to the consultoware places are health insurance companies (which I patently refused to apply to) and financial services companies (also not terribly appealing). Those sorts of places always looked like they were exactly the same sort of poorly managed shit-show as the consultoware places, just that the client was in-house. Not much consumer-facing software being made out here, I guess.