053 - Pair Programming

23 Jan, 2018

Pair programming is a productive way to write code with other people, and often used as an interview tool as well. I’ve been incorporating pairing into my study plan recently, and here’s what I learned!

What is pair programming? It’s two people writing code together, and sharing one computer to do it. One person is the driver: their hands are on the keyboard and they are talking through the code they write as they write it. The other person is the navigator: the navigator takes a ‘big picture’ approach and reviews the code as it’s being written, stopping to ask questions or offer guidance based on what the driver writes.

During the pair programming session, you would periodically switch so that each person sits in both roles several times. The main idea is that with two heads working together, the code will be better than if just one person was working alone.

Here are the biggest benefits and lessons I’ve found so far in my pair programming experiences:

And if you don’t live in a busy area or can’t get yourself to a place where other people are up for pairing, don’t discount the option of finding a pair programming partner online. My experience was great—I’ll include some links to open communities where you can look for a pairing partner in the list below.

Thoughts on this episode? Leave a comment below or tweet me @startovercoder.