Coding Dojo

Edit on Github

Participants: Apologies, I forgot to make a list. It was about 10 - 12 people, around half of whom hadn’t come to a GRUG meeting before.

Scribe: EmilyBache

Kata: KataMinesweeper in Ruby on a Mac with TextMate and RSpec

Schedule

18:00 ~ 18:30 informal welcome, explanations and setting up environment. We had already agreed before the meeting which Kata we would do, and that we would be using RSpec, through discussion on the mailing list.

18:30 ~ 20:30 Coding Session

We tackled the problem in a RandoriKata style, using PingPong pair switching.

20:30 ~ 21:00 Retrospective

We talked about what happened in four categories.

What pleased us

* Good for beginners to Ruby, syntax questions answered without disrupting flow

* Tests were very readable, partly thanks to RSpec

What displeased us

* Several participants had never used a Mac or Ruby before, writing code was slow and frustrating due to keyboard and syntax difficulties.

* Multiline strings in Ruby are ugly (compared to python)

What surprised us

* we didn’t solve the whole problem, although it was quite simple and we discussed design plans at the start (something we had thought at previous retrospectives might help speed progress)

What puzzled us

* RSpec gives readable tests, but how on earth does it work underneath

* Why didn’t we start with the (failing) acceptance test instead of 0 0 input? That would have been better BDD.

* Why did we give up on using a regexp to split up the input and instead implement a state machine

We resolved to try the following at our next dojo meeting

* KataMinesweeper again with Ruby and RSpec

* Windows environment instead of Mac (familiar to more participants)

* Start with the acceptance test then implement top down using mocking (NiclasNilsson suggested this)

* Be more aware of the Ruby-knowledgeable/Ruby-newbie ratio (says David Vrensk)

* Allow a Ruby-knowing person to grab the keyboard from a Ruby-newbie if the alternative is to dictate what to type letter by letter (David again)