So my new apprentice is hard at work trying to master all of the nooks and crannies of the .NET Framework, and it has forced me to think about how one teaches something this immense. One of the things most professional developers take for granted is how much of the .NET Framework they have memorized. Rote memorization of things like how to split a pipe delimited string into an array plays a huge factor in confidence and speed when we work as developers. But like trained martial artists, once these maneuvers become second nature, we don’t think about them. A black belt does not spend time thinking about throwing a block, he throws the block and then thinks about the level of force with which to respond.
So in thinking through this, and re-reading about Coding Katas, or as my friend Sara Ford would writely call then Coding Kumite, I realized that what I needed for Chris was Coding Kihon (seriously go read that excellent article, I’ll wait).
Out of this was born Squire, a basic drill that can be repeated that will train the user on various aspects of the syntax and framework libraries of .NET. At the current time it contains only two Kihon classes, specifically on System.String and System.Console. I expect this will grow rapidly over the next few weeks.
Oh … and if you’re curious what the Round Table part is all about … you’ll just have to wait a little longer, as that is the topic of another post.