Note that this post is part of a series where I am ‘live blogging’ my way through the ministry of testing’s 30 days of Agile Testing challenge.
For today’s challenge, we were to pair with a developer on a code review. I’m obviously not writing about my experiences of today (I don’t know about you, but I don’t go into work on Saturdays), but I have done this in the recent past.
In a code review I participated in recently, there were some things I didn’t understand. The developer had commented that I could test the method with a particular call, but I didn’t see that caller anywhere in the code. I did a video call with the developer and we had a good chat about some of the things I was confused on (his comment had referenced the wrong method), and we also talked about how the particular workflow we were trying to achieve only required a part of the code that he had in place. He ended up removing a part of the code (less testing work – yay!). Overall the experience was a very positive one and, I’ll be honest, I was quite surprised by how effective I was able to be in the review.
I’ve never looked at C# code before a few months ago and I still have very little idea of how it works and certainly could not actually write any of it without a good bit of research and work on my part. Yet I was able to be an effective, active participant in the code review. By understanding basic software engineering logic like loops and conditionals and by reading the variable and method names I was able to figure out enough of what was going on in the product to ask moderately intelligent questions. Those questions were enough to open up a discussion and lead to a better shared understanding of what was going on.
Personally I have found reading code reviews to be very helpful and I have also found that I am on occasion, able to participate in them in a useful way. If you have the chance, take a few minutes out of your day now and then to participate in a code review. You might just be surprised at how useful it is and how effective you are at.