Blog 2

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Working with a partner on a piece of code has both advantages and disadvantages. It's great when you're stumped, or there's a piece of bug that you don't want to work on, and BAM. Your partner did it. AWESOME. In this respect its great. All that you have to do then is ask your partner to explain it to you. And then you move on. Also when you're stuck, it helps sometimes to collaborate. You can each voice your ideas, and sometimes between the two of you a solution can be created. This is usually quicker and easier than trying to figure out what's going on by yourself. Sometimes problems arise however. If you're working separately and both try to fix the same problem this can lead to conflicting updates, and a waste of time with both of you trying to working on the same thing.
When you and your partner have different ideas on what the problems and the solutions are it sucks. You think that it should look like this, your partner thinks it should be like this, and then you waste time trying to prove to each other that each of you is right. This is not really a bad thing, because when you analyze both of the arguments you can come up with the best parts of each person's ideas and end up with a better solution than either of you originally though of. Of course you could also end up with something worse. This happened to me while working on iteration 1. My partner and I were trying to decide exactly how the print function should work. We both had radically different ideas on what to do. We ended up resolving a solution pretty quickly, so it wasn't a very big deal, but it still was a minor annoyance. As I said I didn't have much trouble with this in iteration 1, but it was there and I think it may pop up again, and I see how it could prove to be a big problem, especially if the function in question is very complicated and large.
There were a few hiccups for me in Iteration 1. The problem I mentioned where I didn't agree with what my partner thought it should be, we had a few problems with conflicts when we each tried to submit a chunk that both of us had been working on. It wasn't all bad however. There were a few spots that I didn't really know what was going on and how to set it up and my partner helped figure it out, and with the amount of code that we had to write for all of the different tokens, having a partner helped a lot to lighten the load. So to sum it all up I think working in a group is worth it. There are a few problems that arise, but they can be worked out or even avoided completely with good communication. The amount of help a partner can provide more than makes up for the potential discord in my mind.

6 Comments

I agree that working in a group is very beneficial. The benefits outweigh the disadvantages in a project like WTF. The saying "two heads are better than one" really applies to this blog. Glad you included some examples.

Tom Hoang

It can be difficult when two equally sufficient solutions exist, especially when both parties believe their way is better. As you said, communication is the key, and in general, as long as both methods are functionally equivalent, solving the problem is more important than how it gets solved, which is how we get the idea of the benefits of abstraction.

Caleb Ahlquist

Me and my partner experienced almost identical issues in our first iteration. We split up most of the work based on our skills, but there were a couple problems where we both had solutions that worked. Overall we still finished much more quickly than I would have alone so in the end its worth it.

Lucas Sherman

My partner and I split up the tasks so we did not have too many implementation details to argue over. We basically planned out the method signatures of each method, and a basic layout and each took a couple.

REPOST: Forgot name

My partner and I split up the tasks so we did not have too many implementation details to argue over. We basically planned out the method signatures of each method, and a basic layout and each took a couple.

Mark Zingler

Being able to talk to your partner and work out how to solve a particular problem is in my opinion one of the largest benefits. Even when they have a different approach to the same problem, it can help get your brain thinking about new ways of tackling a bug. And who knows, your partner's solution may be even better than your own which is always a pleasant surprise. Disagreements are no fun but they are one of the downfalls of an overall beneficial partnership. And even disagreement can help you refine and analyze your own ideas in an effort to prove their superiority. All in all I agree with your points. High five.

Phillip Egelston

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This page contains a single entry by mart2439 published on October 17, 2011 1:32 PM.

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