When Umeå Java User Group participated in GDCR2012, it was our third Code Retreat setup. This time we feel we have got the hang of it!

There were twelve participants with quite diverse programming backgrounds, and during the day we got to stretch our minds to identify the weak and strong spots of our individual crafts.

At the last retrospective we discussed a number of more or less personal insights gained during the day.

  • The craft of programming is not only technical, but relies to a large degree on social skills. This manifested itself clearly when a junior programmer paired with a senior, and during the "Mute" session where discussion sometimes did not occur.
  • An automated test verifies that a system answers correctly to a question. For the verification to make sense, you have to know the correct answer to the question or at least some special part of the answer.
  • Keyboard shortcuts and advanced features of an IDE (such as refactoring, code generation, visualisation and so on) makes you a lot faster. It's totally not that hard to learn either!
  • TDD can be used to describe the behaviour of a system from the client's point of view.

Beyond that, ideas on code style, design patterns and domain modelling/requirements interpretation were exchanged among the participants, and we all had a really good time!

Markus Örebrandfacilitator

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