Pair Programming Agile Dictionary

An avid cricket fan who also likes listening to Hindi music. I have been a follower, admirer and advocate of pair programming for a long time. Every time I try to advocate the use of pair programming I come across few faces who raise their eye brows and I get an impression that they are thinking what a waste of time.

  • Both developers should be familiar with the environment they are working in.
  • While reviewing, the observer also considers the “strategic” direction of the work, coming up with ideas for improvements and likely future problems to address.
  • Since the pair must work as a team, there is little benefit for one developer to work with a distracted partner.
  • Not everyone gets along, and while in an ideal world, everyone would maintain their professionalism in the workplace, we all know that on occasion, certain personalities are bound to clash.
  • And those unfamiliar with a process can be paired with someone who knows more about the process.
  • As the gap decreases the amount of pairing can be reduced.

Programmers should always think of their activity as a shared or a collective project that needs both the individual’s effort without discriminating each other. Each programmer should own both the process and product of the work being shared. It may need some more time, and that’s where pair programming might fail to deliver the expected results. At a higher level, once you start pairing with another developer, you’re going to notice some differences in the ways you each approach your tasks.


He commented that the code benefited from the thinking of two bright minds and the steady dialog between two trusted programmers. He concluded that two programmers in tandem was not redundancy, but rather it was a direct route to greater efficiency and better quality. Another programmer is looking over the driver’s code, which can help reduce mistakes and improve the quality of the code. For many programmers, coding is about getting into a flow state, where everything comes together. Others like to sit with their own thoughts, reflecting quietly on their work and coming to solutions through their own methods.

Keep a keen eye on what is being written and alert the driver if there is some problem with the tactics. Respond responsibly and avoid complicated methods so that the other programmer can instantly act upon them. Handle the responsibility of preserving the code in the database so that changes are not reflected in other steps. Have control over whatever is being developed and record the program.

Benefits of Pair Programming:

It can also be socially awkward to remind your pair when the agreed pairing time has come to an end. For that reason, it can be a good idea to set an alarm that will break the news to both of you what is pair programming without putting the burden on one or the other. As soon as a pair accepts a story to work on, they should be able to define how they will know they are done and how they’re going to prove it.

definition of pair programming

When a pair finds themselves going for more than a minute or two without saying a word, it’s likely the pairing has stopped. Be gracious if you feel you’re more skilled than your pair. Treat them the way you’d want to be treated as you learned something new.

Why Do People Use Pair Programming?

Another advantage of this I see is that it helps people in moving across teams much more easier. You no longer have hardcore dependencies on one or two individuals. In an unfortunate event of somebody leaving the organization or contractor leaving after the contract period you no longer have people taking important knowledge with them.

CodePair by CodeSubmit is a pair programming environment optimized for real-world use cases that supports 24 languages. We offer a ton of features that make it easy to conduct really interesting and company-specific interviews in a matter of minutes. While coding, the driver should have a constant stream of verbal communication with their partner.

Pair programming in interviews

One reason is that Programmer 1 must persuade Programmer 2 to try an innovative idea. They will spend time trading places as the driver, which means both programmers will have to understand the plan and believe it can work. Make sure the problem you create is based on a real problem.

Quick commits to code pair well with switching between the driver and the navigator. This promotes the sharing of more skills between developers and keeps them engaged. If there is no communication going on, then the developers are likely not sharing thought processes. This is why programmers should never be randomly paired.

The Pros of Pair Programming

The programmer looks at the code to find defects and suggests improvements. Code review also combines some testing methods so that quality is ensured. However, it is challenging to find someone who can review our code because others don’t want to see others’ codes since they have difficulty reading and understanding the style and quality. Most of the time, code review consists of adding some functionalities, code cleanliness, and bug fixing, but it also carries a drawback of less appreciation from code reviewers.

definition of pair programming

The navigator focuses on the overall direction of the programming. Two programmers working on a project might be faster than one programmer, but it’s not as fast as two programmers working on the project separately. For some companies, particularly startups for whom speed is vital, pair programming can be too much of a drain on productivity.

Pair programming

With pair programming, junior developers can receive faster training, while experienced developers can level up their expertise. It also helps to increase the speed and efficiency of the onboarding process. New developers can more easily find their place within the team and familiarize themselves with the coding environment, with the help of their coworkers. Pair programming is a collaborative technique that helps developers improve quality and reduce errors while coding.

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