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RE: [XP] XP without Pair Programming

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  • Jason Rogers
    I would say that because of the essential nature of pair programming in XP you should either woek with what you have or not do it all (that isn t to say that
    Message 1 of 10 , May 31, 2001
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      I would say that because of the essential nature of pair programming in XP
      you should either woek with what you have or not do it all (that isn't to
      say that you can't adopt most/all of the principles however). Does your
      company have conference rooms that are rarely used? Do any of the
      programmers have larger cubes than the rest? Things would be tight no
      doubt, but most likely do-able. What about switching programmer cubes for
      larger cubes/offices in the organization? As far as the bullpen setup goes,
      that isn't necessary, though much desired. I venture to believe that you
      could make PP work some how, you just need to get a little creative.

      -Jason

      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: Buddha Buck [mailto:bmbuck@...]
      > Sent: Thursday, May 31, 2001 2:01 PM
      > To: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
      > Subject: [XP] XP without Pair Programming
      >
      >
      > How possible is it to do XP without pair programming?
      >
      > I don't mean to feed the flames of "Pair Programming
      > makes XP hard to sell,
      > so let's ditch it", but instead I have a rather more
      > practical issue. I
      > personally think that pair programming would benefit me,
      > and my company,
      > greatly.
      >
      > My problem is logistical. XP Explained, Kent describes
      > the type of
      > facilities that XP uses: "Putting your computer in a
      > corner, for example,
      > doesn't work, because it is impossible for two people to
      > sit side-by-side
      > and program. Ordinary cubicle wall heights don't work
      > well -- walls
      > between cubicles should be half-height or eliminated entirely"
      >
      > Where I work, every programmer is given a cube, complete
      > with a corner
      > desk, etc. Exactly the setup that Kent describes as
      > being the worst
      > setup. To make matters worse, we can't rearrange the
      > cube walls with a
      > screwdriver, it would take a sledge-hammer, masonry saws,
      > crowbars,
      > etc. The cube walls are permanent fixtures of the
      > architecture, made of
      > studded frames and sheet-rock. The desks likewise are
      > permanent, secured
      > to the walls with screws, nails, glue, and caulk. Even
      > using the "visitor"
      > method of pair programming, there isn't enough space in
      > the cube to get two
      > programmers side-by-side, able to pair program. The
      > facilities also
      > eliminate the open communication style that the bullpen
      > style of facilities
      > fosters as well.
      >
      > So if I'm to convince management to give XP a try
      > (something I'd like to
      > do), Pair Programming isn't going to be an option unless
      > we build new
      > facilities.
      >
      > So, without Pair Programming, how well does XP hold together?
      >
      > Later,
      > Buddha
      >
      >
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    • Roger Lipscombe
      ... ...leaving aside the question of if you re not doing all of XP, you re not doing XP , which personally, I agree with (we re not doing XP), I d recommend
      Message 2 of 10 , May 31, 2001
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        Buddha Buck wrote:
        > How possible is it to do XP without pair programming?

        ...leaving aside the question of "if you're not doing all of XP, you're not
        doing XP", which personally, I agree with (we're not doing XP), I'd
        recommend the following:

        Explain to management all of the central tenets of XP, including pair
        programming. My guess is that you'll find it difficult to get buy in for
        some of the other practices, leaving alone the fact that PP is a practical
        impossibility at the moment.

        Suggest introducing XP in small pieces. We tried some PP, but it didn't
        seem to gel. I'll try to suggest it again later. Other people have
        recommended fixing the things that hurt most first. In our case that's a
        lack of tests, so we're working on fixing this first.

        If you can demonstrate that introducing some of the parts of XP results in
        an improvement, you're more likely to drum up interest in trying some of the
        other, more controversial, parts.

        In short, by demonstrating that doing some of XP is helping, you might be
        able to persuade management to buy you some sledgehammers and masonry saws.

        > So, without Pair Programming, how well does XP hold together?

        It's important to realise that the rest of XP will help, even if you only
        apply some of the practices. It's just that the practices are
        mutually-reinforcing, and you won't get the full benefit of XP unless you're
        doing all of them.

        Cheers,
        Roger.
      • Nick Fortescue
        ... We are a team which are sometimes co-located and sometimes not. The method we are trying at the moment is: 1) All production code is written in pairs. So
        Message 3 of 10 , Jun 1, 2001
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          > A related difficulty is highly distributed organizations - the Smalltalk
          > team here at Cincom has developers in:
          >
          > Cincinnati
          > Santa Clara
          > Others scattered around North America in home offices
          > Others in Europe
          >
          > In this kind of situation, pair programming is difficult as well. I
          > suppose WebCams and NetMeeting could help - any thoughts?

          We are a team which are sometimes co-located and sometimes not. The method
          we are trying at the moment is:

          1) All production code is written in pairs. So when you can't pair, write
          tests, do the business tasks that aren't coding, watch the customer for a
          bit to get feedback, write spikes, estimate, talk on the phone about design
          etc.

          2) If you really really really have to write some code (immediate customer
          need) and you really really really can't pair, then iterate( then write the
          test, do a code review of the test), iterate (write the code, do a code
          review of the code). Pair programming is taking this to extremes. If you
          can't go to extremes do the best you can.

          One advantage we've noticed is that you soon see the time advantages pair
          programming gains you, and you end up pairing as much as possible just to
          avoid the continual breaks for code inspections. Web cams and netmeeting
          might help with the inspections.

          We tried pairing when we could and not when we couldn't and it didn't work
          well for us. Communal code ownership got lost, and constant refactoring and
          quality of tests started clipping because the lack of a pair made it easy to
          lose discipline. This led to a few rewrites, which were costly in time.

          Nick Fortescue.
        • lisa.crispin@att.net
          ... I ... I m experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, to work with a buddy on an example application for a book we re writing, and it s working
          Message 4 of 10 , Jun 5, 2001
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            --- In extremeprogramming@y..., "Nick Fortescue" <nick@o...> wrote:

            > >
            > > In this kind of situation, pair programming is difficult as well.
            I
            > > suppose WebCams and NetMeeting could help - any thoughts?
            >

            I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, to work with
            a buddy on an example application for a book we're writing, and it's
            working great so far. He's in Ohio, I'm in Denver, so not a lot of
            alternatives. We talk via phone while pairing with NetMeeting. If
            you were doing something complex, you might miss having a whiteboard.
            I was amazed how well it works.
          • ronjeffries@acm.org
            ... well. ... with ... it s ... whiteboard. ... At an OOPSLA workshop on XP, a team reported that they had been using NetMeeting with good results. They were
            Message 5 of 10 , Jun 5, 2001
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              --- In extremeprogramming@y..., lisa.crispin@a... wrote:
              > --- In extremeprogramming@y..., "Nick Fortescue" <nick@o...> wrote:
              >
              > > >
              > > > In this kind of situation, pair programming is difficult as
              well.
              > I
              > > > suppose WebCams and NetMeeting could help - any thoughts?
              > >
              >
              > I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, to work
              with
              > a buddy on an example application for a book we're writing, and
              it's
              > working great so far. He's in Ohio, I'm in Denver, so not a lot of
              > alternatives. We talk via phone while pairing with NetMeeting. If
              > you were doing something complex, you might miss having a
              whiteboard.
              > I was amazed how well it works.

              At an OOPSLA workshop on XP, a team reported that they had been using
              NetMeeting with good results. They were asked how they could compare
              the NetMeeting approach to actually pairing with the same person.
              They said that pairing in real life was about four times better than
              NetMeeting.

              Regards,
            • Ropa, Steve
              I also am working with a buddy on an application using NetMeeting(in this case we are BOTH in Denver, just different parts). We are finding that it works
              Message 6 of 10 , Jun 5, 2001
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                I also am working with a buddy on an application using NetMeeting(in this
                case we are BOTH in Denver, just different parts). We are finding that it
                works well. We use NetMeeting for voice communications as well as sharing
                apps and whiteboard. One thing that we have found, however is that a
                periodic session in the same room is helpful to keep the creative energy up.

                -----Original Message-----
                From: lisa.crispin@... [mailto:lisa.crispin@...]
                Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2001 12:55 PM
                To: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [XP] XP without Pair Programming


                --- In extremeprogramming@y..., "Nick Fortescue" <nick@o...> wrote:

                > >
                > > In this kind of situation, pair programming is difficult as well.
                I
                > > suppose WebCams and NetMeeting could help - any thoughts?
                >

                I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, to work with
                a buddy on an example application for a book we're writing, and it's
                working great so far. He's in Ohio, I'm in Denver, so not a lot of
                alternatives. We talk via phone while pairing with NetMeeting. If
                you were doing something complex, you might miss having a whiteboard.
                I was amazed how well it works.


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                see www.xpuniverse.com for details and registration.

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                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • khansen@quelsys.com
                ... There s the possibility of still having the two-sets-of-eyes advantage of pairing with the use of a distributed desktop tool. Best we ve found (relatively
                Message 7 of 10 , Jun 5, 2001
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                  --- In extremeprogramming@y..., lisa.crispin@a... wrote:
                  > I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, to
                  > work with a buddy on an example application for a book we're
                  > writing, and it's working great so far. He's in Ohio, I'm in
                  > Denver, so not a lot of alternatives. We talk via phone while
                  > pairing with NetMeeting. If you were doing something complex,
                  > you might miss having a whiteboard.
                  > I was amazed how well it works.

                  There's the possibility of still having the two-sets-of-eyes
                  advantage of pairing with the use of a distributed desktop tool.
                  Best we've found (relatively stable, and cross-platform friendly) is
                  the VNC (Virtual Network Computing) tools from AT&T Laboratories
                  Cambridge. Worth a look, by all means:
                  http://www.uk.research.att.com/vnc/
                • Dave Astels
                  ... Doesn t NetMeeting include a shared whiteboard application? ... Encouraging. I d be interested in seeing how an IDE with peer2peer capabilities would
                  Message 8 of 10 , Jun 5, 2001
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                    lisa.crispin@... wrote:

                    > --- In extremeprogramming@y..., "Nick Fortescue" <nick@o...> wrote:
                    >
                    >>> In this kind of situation, pair programming is difficult as well.
                    >>
                    >>> I suppose WebCams and NetMeeting could help - any thoughts?
                    >>
                    >
                    > I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, [...] If
                    > you were doing something complex, you might miss having a whiteboard.

                    Doesn't NetMeeting include a shared whiteboard application?

                    >
                    > I was amazed how well it works.

                    Encouraging. I'd be interested in seeing how an IDE with peer2peer
                    capabilities would work. It might make for an interesting thesis.

                    Dave

                    --
                    Dave Astels <dastels@...>, Coad Certified Mentor & TogetherCommunity lead
                    TogetherSoft Corporation -- Adaptive Business-process Automation
                    HQ: Raleigh, NC
                    PO Box 397, Wolfville, NS, Canada, B0P 1X0
                    tel 1-902-542-0365, fax 1-902-542-0365, cell 1-902-488-9159
                    mobile-email 9024889159@...
                    http://www.togethersoft.com http://www.togethercommunity.com
                  • Peter Schrier
                    On XP2001 there was a session in which dXP was presented. d = distributed. dXP used netmeeting/webcam/telephone for pair programming. Peter
                    Message 9 of 10 , Jun 7, 2001
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                      On XP2001 there was a session in which dXP was presented. d = distributed. dXP
                      used netmeeting/webcam/telephone for pair programming.

                      Peter


                      Quoting Dave Astels <dastels@...>:

                      >
                      >
                      > lisa.crispin@... wrote:
                      >
                      > > --- In extremeprogramming@y..., "Nick Fortescue" <nick@o...> wrote:
                      > >
                      > >>> In this kind of situation, pair programming is difficult as well.
                      > >>
                      > >>> I suppose WebCams and NetMeeting could help - any thoughts?
                      > >>
                      > >
                      > > I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, [...] If
                      > > you were doing something complex, you might miss having a whiteboard.
                      >
                      > Doesn't NetMeeting include a shared whiteboard application?
                      >
                      > >
                      > > I was amazed how well it works.
                      >
                      > Encouraging. I'd be interested in seeing how an IDE with peer2peer
                      > capabilities would work. It might make for an interesting thesis.
                      >
                      > Dave
                      >
                      > --
                      > Dave Astels <dastels@...>, Coad Certified Mentor &
                      > TogetherCommunity lead
                      > TogetherSoft Corporation -- Adaptive Business-process Automation
                      > HQ: Raleigh, NC
                      > PO Box 397, Wolfville, NS, Canada, B0P 1X0
                      > tel 1-902-542-0365, fax 1-902-542-0365, cell 1-902-488-9159
                      > mobile-email 9024889159@...
                      > http://www.togethersoft.com http://www.togethercommunity.com
                      >
                      >
                      > To Post a message, send it to: extremeprogramming@...
                      >
                      > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
                      > extremeprogramming-unsubscribe@...
                      >
                      > Don't miss XP UNIVERSE, the first US conference on XP and Agile Methods.
                      > see www.xpuniverse.com for details and registration.
                      >
                      > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                      >
                      >
                      >
                    • Roger Lipscombe
                      ... Yes, and it works really well with mimio. We ve not used it for pairing - we re all in the same office; but we have used it for sketching stuff during
                      Message 10 of 10 , Jun 7, 2001
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                        > > > I'm experimenting with pair programming using NetMeeting, [...] If
                        > > > you were doing something complex, you might miss having a whiteboard.
                        > >
                        > > Doesn't NetMeeting include a shared whiteboard application?
                        > >

                        Yes, and it works really well with mimio. We've not used it for pairing -
                        we're all in the same office; but we have used it for sketching stuff during
                        teleconferences. It's more natural than trying to draw stuff with the
                        mouse. Requires a real whiteboard (and some kind of projector for full
                        effect).

                        Cheers,
                        Roger.
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