Code Retreat - Summer 2012

Date and Time: 
2012 Aug 7th @ 8am - 12:30pm
ML Damon Room
Facilitator: Davide Del Vento


What is a code retreat?

A code retreat is an event in which developers gather and learn, by doing, the fundamentals of software development and design. This is more about improving the process of software development than learning, say, a new algorithm or a new programming language (although you could learn a new algorithm or a new programming language). Any programming language is welcome.

Why participate in a code retreat?

Because it gives the opportunity to take part in focused practice, away from the pressures of 'getting things done'. People can practice about modular and object-oriented code design, testing, agile, or other techiques which look nice on paper, but developers are not sure if they will work for them - and moreover, devs don't have time to try these techinques out in normal times.

How and with what should one come?

Must have: a laptop, a development environment (e.g. text editor, compiler and runtime) either installed locally or available remotely on a machine where the developer can login, test framework (e.g. pFUnit, JUnit, TestNG, PyUnit, Nose, or the developer's favorite test framework for his/her favorite programming language). It's ok if the developer does not have experience in the test framework(s) of choice, but must have it installed on the machine planned to use and must know how to use it for a "hello world" case: time is limited and we cannot waste it with time consuming installation and configuration issues (trivial or not)

Nice to have: a list of techniques to try, e.g. TDD-as-if-you-meant-it, test-first, avoid-conditionals, avoid-loops, write-short-methods, etc. The developer does not have to have this list, as the facilitator will guide through a list of possibilities. But having it will be beneficial, so that one can try things he or she is potentially interested in, instead of random ones.

Who participate in a code retreat?

You! We aim for about 50%-50% split between UCAR/NCAR and non-UCAR/NCAR participants. Register here.


Mesa Lab building. You can ask directions for the Damon room at the lobby.

When and for how long?

Usually code retreats happen on Saturday and last 8 hours. Given that many software engineers have families and other committments, SEA is trying a different approach: doing half of a business day, starting as early as possible in the morning and ending before lunch. Refreshment and coffee will be served at 8am and available till the end of the session.

How to learn more?

See the website

Speaker Description: 

Davide is seminar coordinator since January 2010, and SEA chair since October 2010. For this event, he will be acting as Best-Practices chair, which is currently vacant.

Event Category: