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Liam McLennan hackingon.net
Yesterday was the first day of JAOO Brisbane 2008. Choosing tutorials was hard. Should I learn from Rebecca Wirfs-Brock about telling design stories, or Robert Martin about agile O-O design? I chose to attend the Martin Fowler and Erik Dornenburg tutorial on test driven development. It was a full day tutorial so it meant I missed out on the other tutorials.

As someone who is familiar with test-driven development I was hoping for some expert insight beyond just an explanation of the basic red-green-refactor process. I liked the way that they related test-driven development to the values of XP.

SIMPLICITY: Tests narrow focus and help to avoid speculative generality.
COMMUNICATION: Tests help drive the design of clear interfaces and also serve as documentation of the interface.
FEEDBACK: Tests provide nearly immediate, and unarguable feedback about the correctness of the code they test.
COURAGE: Tests give a reason to act with courage. This was contrasted with the smalltalk community who apparently had courage without discipline.

To introduce the example application they used story cards. Something new for me was the following formula for writing stories:

As a ________ I would like to be able to ___________ so that ____________.

This seems like a good formula and I will certainly be giving it a try on my projects.

There was quite a look of talk using the language of Eric Evan's Domain-driven design. We were encouraged to refactor variable and class names to match the ubiquitous language and to use immutable value objects.

There is no substitue for an experienced teacher and although there was really no new content for me I feel that it was worthwhile. A book can present rules but without a quality teacher it is difficult to know how to apply the rules and in particular how dogmattic to be. I am looking forward to some great talks today. Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2008 4:52 PM | Back to top

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