Day 35

August 22, 2018 22:09 UTC Team Barcelona Duo (Exercism)Subscribe to this teams's activities

Deciphering Rails and a Slack Tutorial

We've spent the past two days deciphering Rails mailers documentation so we could fix the bug that has been assigned to us. We could understand them, but we were struggle to apply that knowledge to the codebase. We couldn't figure out what part of the mysterious configurations interacted with the database. At our meeting with Jeremy he gave us the most amazing walk-through of an important section of the code. His explanation of MVC, routes and the database included analogies featuring buildings, t-shirts, hospitals and haircuts! It was so visual that we could envision the codebase in a way that makes sense to us.

We would have been happy had the conversation ended there, as we had learned a lot, but there was more. We were assigned our very own feature to develop for the platform!! We are so thrilled and excited about this new challenge.

Reflections on mentors

We talk a lot about how happy we are with our coaches and mentors. We get a lot of support and are forming professional relationships and friendships that will last beyond RGSoC. In a more general sense we are lucky to be surrounded by people who know how to mentor and how to coach. Today we are going to talk a bit about our experience being mentored.

A good mentor meets you where you are and gives you guidance and support in a way that makes sense to you. Today we experienced that with Jeremy. He told us enough to get us unstuck, and explained things in a way that made sense to us. And he didn't tell us the answer, so we will be able to feel the thrill of resolving the issue. He impressed us, again, with his ability to teach through Slack.

A good mentor also knows when to push someone. We got a bit of that too. He advised us to dive into the Ruby track of Exercism and take advantage of the resources available such as the walk-through Katrina made on TDD and his getting started video. He also encouraged to start tackling problems not only through pair programming, but also individually, to get a better sense of our individual strengths and weaknesses.

Perhaps the most important thing, he (strongly) advised us to dive into the codebase and break things to see how they work. A few weeks ago we made a few tentative experiments changing text and headers. At the time we didn't know how to run tests; now we do. Plus, with our knowledge of git we know we can always revert any changes we make. We are looking forward to breaking things tomorrow.

Other Highlights

  • Getting tips from our supervisor Sophia
  • Listening to another great podcast by our mentor Katrina Owens

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