Night gathers, and now my watch begins

…Or how to deal with code quality through Game of Thrones

On 11th July we congregated to enjoy the last talk of the summer, from the BADG (Barcelona Android Developer Group) meetup in our eDreams ODIGEO canteen. Even though this Meetup group is Android-oriented, our last talk was more about how to deal with code quality within a team, so there was actually no expertise around the Android platform needed.

As developers we can tell how difficult it can be to work in a team with other developers, no matter the badge they wear (junior, senior, ninja, advocate, etc). As the team grows and evolves you can see its flaws and areas-of-improvement – and some of them are kind of easy to solve, whereas others can be rather hard, especially when they’re not related to the code or the project itself but more to people.

This is how Nicolás Patarino’s talk started. Even though he used an invented company called Targaryen Consulting, the problem he presented was a very common and realistic one: two developers with a different background arguing through a code review about some implementation.

Nicolás Patarino

Nico emphasized the fact that as developers, one of the most powerful tools we have to share knowledge and to socialize, are code reviews.

But what kind of benefits do we get from code reviewing? We could mention three different levels of benefits: benefits for the company, for your career and personal ones. There are few listed in the table below, which show that code reviews are more than just checking some code.

Increase software quality
Find bugs before release
Make code maintainable
Learn from peers
Gain knowledge about your business
Obtain visibility in your company
Learn the value of constructive criticism
Improve your soft skills

Through his talk, Nico also explained which are some of the different types of code reviewers he has found in real life. This was fun because he matched each type of reviewer to their correspondent Game of Thrones character – if you have watched the series I’m sure you are now wondering which one you are.

It was surprising how almost everyone in the public realised that they have previously been, or currently are, one type or another. 

In the last part of the talk, Nico shared some advice and tips on how to improve our relationships with teammates through code reviewing. It concluded with a super fun quiz were the audience had to analyze some code review comments and commit descriptions, and then tried to identify if they were well written and what would they change in order to improve it.

I don’t want to spoil it any further, so go and watch the full talk! I’m sure you will enjoy it (it’s in Spanish FYI!). Nico demonstrated again why he is such a great speaker, mixing the right amount of interest, engagement and fun during the whole talk.

PS: BADG talks will return to our canteen next September, so stay tuned!

Barcelona, Development, Events, Methodologies, Mobile

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