AgileWorks Romania
22Aug/17Off

Coding Dojo – Ants on a stick

This time we will tackle the following problem:

Four red ants and two black ants are walking along the edge of a one metre stick. The four red ants are all walking from left to right, while the two black ants are walking from right to left.
The ants always walk at exactly one centimeter per second. Whenever they bump into another ant, they immediately turn around and walk in the other direction. And whenever they get to the end of a stick, they fall off.
Question: How long will it be before all the ants fall off?

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A Coding Dojo is a team practice format that accelerates knowledge transfer and sharing skills between team members. With an experienced facilitator, it is also a way of learning by applying various techniques.

Objectives

The following skills are typical candidates for improvement during a dojo:

• Refactoring
• Simple design
• Clean code
• Improving pair programming technique
• How to safely modify code you don't understand (usually legacy code)
• Learning a new programming language
• Unit testing
• Test driven development

In addition, coding dojo can be used by a team as a collective and structured way of solving difficult or risky problems related to production, like fixing a bug or redesigning parts of the application.

How it works?

The basic format of a coding dojo:

• All developers and the facilitator gather in a room.
• The facilitator introduces the purpose and the format of the coding dojo.
• One laptop with a functional development environment is connected to a projector.
• Two developers pair program on the laptop. The others are in the room, watching the code changes.
• Every 7 minutes, one developer leaves the laptop and the next one from the room takes his place.
• After a specified period of time (usually around two hours), the dojo ends with a retrospective.

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