Wednesday, March 31, 2010

March Coding Dojo Summary

Last night was our groups first Coding Dojo and it went really well and I think everyone got something out of it.

For the curious people were given a choice of one of the following Katas to do:

We then grouped everyone into kata clusters based on their choices so that people working on the same kata were in the same room and could talk about design and implementation issues together.

The clusters then tackled their katas via two 40 minute sessions with a pizza break in between and time at the end to talk about what they learned.

What was great to see was that almost everyone elected to work in a pair (or a trio) and that people were trying to use techniques and approaches that they hadn’t tried before.  We even had one pair attempt the Minesweeper kata using F# (with tests in C#) even though they had never written a line of F# code before! Sweet!

The camaraderie on display was excellent, as was the joking and fun, and the when the kata clusters talked with each other about how they went it was great seeing such openness from people about what they screwed up and what they learned.

For everyone who came – thank you for making it such a great and enjoyable night!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

JetBrains Support

Many thanks go to Thoughtworks for supporting our group by allowing us to use their premises and drink their beer on Tuesday nights.  It's very appreciated.
And now we can start saying thank you to JetBrains as well, since they are providing copies of ReSharper or DotTrace as give aways for meetings.  We need to have around 30 people along to be able to do the giveaway, so bring some friends to the code dojo this month and see if you can land yourself a free license :-)

See you there!

Monday, March 8, 2010

March Meeting – Coding Dojo

This month we’re going to be running a coding dojo.  For those who don’t know what one of these are here’s a definition from the CodingDojo wiki:

A Coding Dojo is a meeting where a bunch of coders get together to work on a programming challenge. They are there have fun and to engage in DeliberatePractice in order to improve their skills.

We’re going to pick something simple for the challenge so that you don’t have to think about the subject domain too much letting you focus more on the techniques you use.  So if you’re still learning TDD, or you want to try MSpec, or you want to practice pairing with someone and see how that works, or you want to try solving a problem using F#, or you just want to come and geek out with some code then this is for you.

And when you come, remember to bring not only a willingness to learn and try something new, but also a willingness to help others out.  These things work best when everyone is willing to help everyone else.

Oh, don’t forget, bring your laptop if you have one, and if you don’t have one, then don’t worry! We’ll get you paired up with someone else on the night. :-)

Finally, don’t forget to RSVP (on the right) so we can sort out catering as well.  See you there!