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Re: [XP] Pairing with 2 others simultaneously

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  • William Pietri
    ... The optimum time to pair with somebody is when they need you. Sometimes they ll know when they need you, so you should be close at hand. Sometimes they
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 27, 2005
      jeffz_2002 wrote:

      >Hello, I'm working with two junior developers: one with better skills
      >but on a more difficult project, and the other on a simpler project.
      >I'd like to pair with both of them, working with one for some time,
      >then the other, etc, as our team is on some silly timelines. Does
      >anyone have any advice/experience to share on this (the simultaneous
      >pairing, not the silly timelines... )?
      >
      >e.g.,
      >- how to keep both reasonably balanced -- I can imagine getting
      >absorbed in one project at the expense of the other person's progress
      >- optimum time to work with each
      >- set reasonable code increments (I guess TDD w/ fast feedback is the
      >best thing to do)
      >
      >

      The optimum time to pair with somebody is when they need you. Sometimes
      they'll know when they need you, so you should be close at hand.
      Sometimes they won't, so you should pair with them often enough that the
      wasted time isn't large.

      I think the first step is to put them in the same lab area at desks that
      are close, like this:

      http://www.xp123.com/xplor/room-gallery/index.shtml#team1

      That way you can scoot back and forth and take advantage of tacit
      communication.

      If you find yourself neglecting one of them, try a timer. I'd start with
      a kitchen timer or a chess clock.

      Also consider having them pair with one another sometimes, especially
      when you're faced with a chunk of work that you could do much more
      quickly and that may not be particularly instructive. Some refactoring
      and a lot of debugging might qualify there.

      And yes, definitely do small-step TDD. A timer or chess clock may help
      there as well

      William
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