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We All Live In An Uncle Bob Dialog

Robert C. Martin (affectionately known as “Uncle Bob” in the development community) has a number of great books demonstrating the benefits of OOD/OOP and good design principles. Those acquainted with his books will also be familiar with his generous use of conversation dialogs between developers.

A sample excerpt:

RCM: “Will you help me write a little application that calculated bowling scores?”
RSK: “… Sure, Bob, I’d be glad to help. … I used to be a pretty good bowler … “
RCM: “Let’s begin with scoring a single game …”
RSK: “OK, we’re going to need some test data. Let me sketch out a little picture of a scorecard …”
RSK: “Shall we start at the end of the dependency chain and work backward? …”
- A Programming Episode from Agile Principles, Patterns, and Practices

This dialog continues for some 40+ pages as we’re walked through a paired programming session demonstrating test driven development and refactoring techniques. Admittedly, while reading these dialogs, I initially thought they were a bit over-the-top (campy), but as I actively listen to the communication happening within my team I realize that these dialogs are happening all around me.

An excerpt from this past week:

Me: “Will you help me write a stored procedure to retrieve the customer’s cart items count and default lightbox items count?”
Dev: “Sure, Adam, I’d be glad to help.”
Me: “Cool! This will be more efficient than aggregating the data from multiple repositories …”

Pull yourself in, that’s right, a little closer to the campfire, now sing it with me, “We all live in a yellow submarine… errr… an Uncle Bob dialog, an Uncle Bob dialog.” :)

Author: Adam Kahtava Categories: Musings, Software, Testing Tags:
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