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Java Coding Dojo in Melbourne

Posted by johnsmart on April 5, 2010 at 12:37 PM PDT

I will be in Melbourne on April 15-16 for the next Testing and TDD for Java Developers workshop. While I'm over there, we are also organizing a Coding Dojo with the Victoria Java Users Group. The exact date and time will be announced shortly.

A Coding Dojo is a place where programmers come to improve their skills, by following a pattern similar to the martial arts dojo.

Participants meet a a prearranged time in a room that has one computer attached to a screen. A programming challenge is posed for each session. During the session, the group spends a preset amount of time developing a solution to the challenge. At the end of the session the code is discarded (though it may be archived for future reference and study). The amount of time spent on the problem is fixed. Regardless of the state of the solution, when the time expires, the session is done.

The interesting thing about these Coding Dojos is that they are not necessarily done on simple, abstract programming problems - we generally work with real (well, sort of ;-) ) working applications. The idea is to get a feel for TDD practices in a real-world situation, where it is useful to build a solution incrementally, rather than the more academic problems often used in coding dojo katas. 

The coding dojo is free of charge, but places are limited - typically no more than a dozen or so participants - so if you are interested get in touch with Martin Paolo to book a seat. Come along - they are great fun!

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dojos are fun & you should go

To all those future readers: I had a lot of fun at a Dojo during Agile 2006 and you should try to go at least once. Here at Canoo we started Hackergarten: www.hackergarten.net The idea is much the same, except that the problem we work on is a real problem from a real open source project. Last month we added an "Announcement" plugin to Gradle and submitted a patch. This month we are writing some Griffon plugins. There is great satisfaction in contributing a patch to an OSS project, no matter how small. Hopefully our paths cross at a conference this year and we can compare notes on what works and what does not!