Another great pairing session tonight with @jdar! I continue to be amazed at how pleasant and personable the developers I meet are. The internet is a wonderful place.
First up, I’d never coded a Chrome Extension, so Darius took the reigns and started walking through what we were using. The biggest takeaway I got was to put your pride away when you’re pairing. Everyone’s exploring, we’re all trying to get to the next answer, so it doesn’t matter if we’re really well prepared or never coded before… just take the next step.
And we did. We started down the path of trying to get a Chrome extension installed and running locally. It was easy enough to do. We started off by forking Firebase and then using Chrome Extensions “Load unpacked…” option. Worked like a charm and we were off.
The next step was to try to write some Jasmine tests. After realising that we were struggling with both the testing framework, the Chrome Extension framework, and the intereactions of the collaborative editor we were working with, we decided to go toward a code spike to “get things working” – sometimes this is what you need to get a sense that you’re exploring and making progress. Pairing is good for this since it makes you less likely to spin your wheels for a while. There were multiple times that Darius remembered things I had no clue about and a few times I helped him out. +1 for Pairing.
After that we got our basic extension code running in the right context and wrote out to the console. Doing this drove us forward to start doing what we expected, which is see our collaborative editor inside the github page.
We ended our session by seeing an error in our console so we would have a great jumping off point next time.
I loved this session for a few reasons. It’s the first session I didn’t drive much on, so I spent most of my time learning. I also enjoyed the idea of learning a new technology by pairing. So many times I try to set up time to learn something new and I end up playing Angry Birds instead. This allowed me to focus on learning a bit. Now I have a very basic understanding of something I had no clue about 3 hours ago. What a great investment.
On to the next pairing session…