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20642Pilot Project in XP

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  • Larmore, Edward
    Feb 1, 2001
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      I'm new to XP, and decided to learn by doing. Two friends and I started last
      night on implementing a game, called Ader's Cage, in Java. One of the
      friends is playing the customer, and the other friend and I are a
      programming pair. It is my first XP project. Here are some of the
      observations I made.

      The biggest lesson I learned last night was that writing tests first helps a
      lot. Once a given test is written, implementing the method being tested is a
      piece of cake. It really is a revolutionary idea.

      Another lesson I learned is that pair programming helps keep the code
      simple, because you're constantly bouncing ideas back and forth with your
      partner. But you have to actively resist the temptation to design for the

      One of the problems I had was trying to keep the customer from getting
      bored. I had him write down user stories. When he was done with that, I had
      him rank them by priority. When he was done with that, I didn't know what to
      do with him. He asked if phone contact would be sufficient in the future. I
      explained that XP encourages an on-site customer at all times. Should I ask
      him to bring a book to read next time, or is phone contact good enough?

      -Ed Larmore
      R a t i o n a l
      the e-development company
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