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Inspiration Episode: Kent Beck Day!

Published 6/5/2015

Hey everyone! Today, I celebrate a hero of mine, Kent Beck. Full of quite a few pieces of wisdom, Kent is an incredible thinker and writer. Today, I share two quotes from Kent, and discuss their implications.

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Transcript (Generated by OpenAI Whisper)
Hey everyone and welcome to Developer Tea name is Jonathan Cutrell and today is a very special episode of Developer TeaIt is your inspiration episode for the week and it's a special edition of the inspiration episode I'm going to call it the Kent Beck tribute episode because I'm gonna be reading two quotes from Kent Beck's Twitter timeline Because it's just that good and to be quite honest I could have read probably ten tweets from Kent But I know you don't have time for that and neither do I so I chose to to share with you today I hope they are as inspiring to you as they are to me The first quote is very simple it goes like this the patient and the textbook should not be opened up at the same time And if you think about it that makes total sense doesn't it? You shouldn't be as a doctor learning how to perform surgery on someone when you are performing surgery on them And in the same way we as programmers shouldn't be learning how to write a language when we are in a high stakes environment We shouldn't be learning how to write a programming language when we are working for a client instead We should be separating our learning Exercises from our actual high stakes client work Now the difference here is that we can actually learn to program in what is it like a simulated real environment Whereas a doctor can't really accurately simulate a Surgery situation, but the spirit of the quote stays the same We shouldn't be doing things that are high stakes and learning at the same time because what happens when we screw up? Well screwing up is a major part of learning You don't know how to do something and one of the best ways to learn is to make mistakes and learn where your knowledge is insufficient and you can't expect your knowledge to become sufficient in time Enough to make those really important decisions on the spot You should give yourself room to fail and that's the point of that tweet from Kent Beck By the way, if you want to follow Kent his name on Twitter is very simply Kent Beck That's K-E-N-T-B-E-C-K I highly recommend that if you don't know who Kent Beck is you take about 10 minutes today to Google what he has done for the computer science world Okay, so the second quote is before you answer a question Take a moment to speculate why they asked that question now I'm gonna read that one more time before you answer a question Take a moment to speculate why they asked that question now And really what Kent is saying is that a question is not simply the words that make up that question a question has context a question is coming from a human with feelings and it's coming in a given scenario It's coming with a lot more information surrounding it than just the words that make up that question And so for us to accurately answer or address another person who is asking us a question We have to understand or at least attempt to understand the context that that question is coming from in order to fully understand the meaning of the question in order to fully understand what that person is actually asking A simple exposition of this idea is the situation where a child continuously asks the question why and we as adults continuously Respond by explaining why and eventually we get to the meaning of life or Where the universe came from and the reality is that that child probably isn't trying to find the meaning of life or The origin of the universe, but instead is trying to say that they are bored or perhaps that they are curious or they are enjoying and Participating in conversation with you and if you know that especially as a parent Then you have a better way of responding to your child of teaching your child and Garnering that curiosity in order to help them learn more all of these things can be Learned from context from understanding where the person is coming from and this doesn't just apply to children This applies to every person that you come in contact with Consider the context and I'll go back and reread that quote once again before you answer a question Take a moment to speculate why they asked that question now I hope you enjoyed this episode of Developer TeaKent if you're listening I'd love to have you on the show. I hope that all of you go and learn a little bit about what Kent Beck has done in the software world in the computer science world If you have thoughts or suggestions or if you'd like to respond to something that I said on this episode You can reach out to me on Twitter at at Developer Teaou can also email me at developertea@gmail.com. I love answering Listen to questions you can even send in an audio recording of your question and I can include your voice on this show Thank you so much for listening to Developer Tea and until next time enjoy your tea