Global Day of Coderetreat 2016 in Macedonia @ HASELT

Global Day of Coderetreat 2016 in Macedonia @ HASELT

GDCR16 is a day for celebrating passion and software craftsmanship. This year's event in Skopje, Macedonia was a blast! Fresh ideas, new perspectives, and great people is everything you need for such an event.

About the event

Coderetreat is a one-day event that provides developers the opportunity for skills improvement by focusing on software development and design fundamentals. By practicing the basic principles of modular and object-oriented design, participants can improve their ability to write code that minimizes the cost of change over time. It aims to shrink the gap between the code we write under pressure of needing to deliver on time and the perfect code.

Hosting and facilitating

Having the huge enthusiasm about community work and passion in software development and coding, HASELT supported this year's Coderetreat in Macedonia by providing sponsorship, logistics for organization and space where coders were gathered. We've had the pleasure to have with us Dalibor Nasevic, who is a long-time facilitator of Coderetreat events in Macedonia and helped all attendees to make the most out of the event.

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Sessions

Starting early in the morning the facilitator introduced the agenda for the day. There were five sessions of pair programming. After each session, retrospective meetings were held where each pair discussed what they did. After that, participants switched pairs and prepared for the next session.

The first session was intended to get the participants familiar with the problem, and introduction to Conway's Game of Life. In the second session, "Ping-pong pair programming", the pairs learned the importance of communication when pairing and collaborate together to see other ways of writing code. The third session was "No primitives across method boundaries (input or output)". In the fourth session, "No conditionals", the pairs had to find ways of avoiding conditionals and fewer logical paths. The last session, "Evil pair programming" was designed to practice writing quality tests, where the tester tries to write good tests and the coder writes just enough code to pass tests.

At the end of all sessions, the participants had the final retrospective with Dalibor. He asked the following questions, to which all participants shared their thoughts:

  • What, if anything, did you learn today?
  • What, if anything, surprised you today?
  • What, if anything, will you do differently moving forward?

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Impressions from the event

Being able to see so diverse thoughts about designing software was truly inspirational, and the way how people collaborated and shared their ideas was really empowering to everyone, including myself. Personally, if I have to choose only a single event that I would like to attend to, Coderetreat would be definitely that one.

Here are impressions shared by my awesome colleagues, the driving force of the whole organization:

We had an amazing time, meeting developers willing to learn, improve and also share their knowledge with others. We hope that the participants found this event as inspirational and productive as we do.

And also, the impressions shared by Dalibor who put his energy and enthusiasm guiding the participants during the whole day:

It was great experience for me being part of another Global Day of Coderetreat and facilitate the local event in Skopje. I am very grateful to Bojan and the rest of the HASELT team for their passion and inspirational energy in organizing and hosting the event. I'm very happy for the attendees too. The ones for who the event is. The ones that chose to spend that Saturday practicing software design with other developers, work in different programming languages, share their knowledge and improve their craft together. Their passion, their positive energy and their enthusiasm. It's great to see how inspirational the event can be for them and what they are going to change on their daily jobs starting Monday.

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What's next?

Next, after being part of this very inspirational event, we are encouraged to contribute even more to the local software development community. So, we put ourselves a goal to organize many similar tech events, workshops, and regular meet-ups in order to bring the local community even closer, by encouraging discussions, empowering people, sharing experiences and ideas. Stay tuned for more info which is coming, very soon!

Additional Reading

Dear reader, thanks for investing your time in reading our collective story, and I hope you'll be inspired enough to join us in the next events, which are coming soon. Oh, and don't forget: always be learning, always be coding.

See more pictures here.

A special thanks to my colleague Viktorija Nikolovska for her help with this article.

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