A conversation

My younger brother has decided to learn to program computers. He asked were to start, so I pointed him at the Ruby on Rails Tutorial and the Pickaxe book.

After finishing the tutorial and part of the book, we had this conversation via text message:

Him: So, I really like rspec. It just makes sense to write code that way.

Me: That's awesome! :-)

Him: I think I told you that I finished that book and have been working on pickaxe. I just did the rspec section, and I don't understand how people would want to jump into a program without writing tests beforehand.

Me: I know, right? But people do.

Him: Writing tests before let's you break it up into easy to accomplish goals and when you get one to pass you know it works. And if something you do later breaks it you know right away.

Me: Yep. I know. And yet, a lot of people don't get it.

I took away 2 thoughts from this conversation:

  1. Don't be afraid to start with testing early in educating a new developer.
  2. The next generation of developers is so much better off than we were at that age.


  1. Love it! Perhaps that's the route I should take with Drake. He's showing a lot of interest in programming.

  2. Very cool. My comment would be that the next gen is only better off in as much as we can leave the industry better. Given the lack of TDD in the general populous (as far as I've been able to see), we're not quite there yet. But it's getting better!


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