Lately I’ve been mobbing or coaching mobbing with several people, sticking with a team for several weeks to months before moving on.
I notice one particular habit and I wonder if you’ve noticed it, or if you do it, what is the underlying mental model.
To understand the habit let’s use first pair programming. There’s a style of pair programming where the person at the keyboard, the driver, is doing, while the other person, the navigator, is giving direction.
So imagine we’re working on a problem and you are the navigator. You want me switch to the production code failing a test, and update the code to get the test green. You tell me to go to the particular class. How do I get there?
Examples I’ve noticed:
- Scan the open tabs to see if it’s up there.
- Open up the project structure and start looking for the file.
- Use any of various shortcuts to get to the file
How I Work
When trying to get to a particular class/file, assuming I don’t have its location memorized (and even if I do), I’ll use a direct access approach.
For example, if I’m using an IDE, I’ll use its shortcut:
|Visual Studio Code||
These all work the same way. Go directly to a file, letting the tool figure out where it is. I do not search tabs to see if a file is open. I do not search the project structure.
I work this way probaby because while my memory in the days timespan is generally pretty good, over time I forget where things are, or they could move (refactored into another package). So I happened across a habit that allows me to memorize less, get to a thing quickly, and relying on the computer to do things computers do well, find stuff.
It might stem from working at the command line for years before I had an IDE.