Coding Dojo: A Regular Activity in CN


Don’t know what a Coding Dojo is? Well it’s a sort of coding relay aimed at stretching programmers’ analytical & logical powers; fine-tuning their ability to find and remove bugs; and improving their skill in writing elegant code by sharing best practises with colleagues. (A Dojo is a training area in Japanese martial arts, so a Coding Dojo is really a training area in the martial programming arts!) How it works is this: you have one laptop and a projector. A task is set, at our first event it was to write a programme encompassing the rules of Conway’s Game of Life. The first coder writes a block of code for a logical task which must fail its unit test. The next coder picks up the baton, finds and fixes the bug so the block of code passes and then extends the code with another logical  task, but leaving it in a fail state. The third coder takes over, fixes the bug….and so on, until everyone has had a go.

One evening in June this year CN Group held its first Coding Dojo, a competitive learning event for programmers intended to support better knowledge sharing and cross team bonding. Twelve coders took part in the two hour event, with two observers to see fair play and encourage the participants. So it’s no surprise that 12 pizzas bit the dust that evening. Nobody kept track of the drinks consumed!

Our first Coding Dojo was a huge success (see it in accelerated time at and attracted interest from senior and junior developers alike. So successful was it that we have now made it a monthly event. The next Dojo is scheduled, after work, on 17 September in Prague; and the October Dojo will be hosted in Zlín. A special one for .NET development is also being planned.

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