Just wanted to point out that the videos for the most-recent ALT.NET NYC meeting have just been posted for viewing. In this meeting we had the benefit of a guest appearance by the famous weary traveler Oren Eini, better known as Ayende Rahien, the creator of RhinoMocks, and contributor to various well-known OSS projects like NHibernate, Castle Windsor, Castle MonoRail, Rhino.* (tools, commons, queues, security, etc., etc., etc. ) and more I’m sure I’ve forgotten to mention here as well.
Ayende = CHAOS (but not in a bad way)
As is usually the case when Oren is involved, the discussion bounced from topic to topic as one conversation trended into another area, into another, and so on. That meant that the discussion didn’t manage to stay particularly well focused on TDD (or mocking!) but instead jumped from topic to topic in an effort to explore all the various areas that attendees wanted to explore.
This is partly due to a few different reasons (IMHO):
- attendees arrived with very different levels of experience in unit testing in general and TDD specifically
- its somewhat difficult to discuss effective TDD without also exploring the other practices, technologies, and design principles that help to support it (Dependency Injection, Inversion-of-Control, Mocking, cohesion, isolation, etc., etc., etc.) and attendees had vastly different levels of exposure to all of these topics as well
- Oren can speak to many if not all of these topics at once and also provide valuable (and usually amusing!) anecdotes to reinforce his opinions and this can often further move the conversation off its planned track
ALT.NET = UNEXPECTED
IMHO one of the underlying premises of ALT.NET meetings is that of “what happens happens” (see Open Spaces and other sources for additional details) and this can sometimes mean that a planned narrow focus of discussion can branch off into equally (if not more) valuable conversations but ones that don’t necessarily remain ‘true’ to the publicly-stated focus of an event.
While we received feedback from some attendees that they were disappointed at the wide-range of discussion varying from the more narrowly-stated topic of TDD and Mock Frameworks, I believe that the meeting was never-the-less a strong success in that attendees were exposed to a much wider variety of discussion topics, tools, recommendations, and ideas than would have been possible had the topics stayed more ‘true to plan’. To be fair, we also received feedback from attendees that reported that this meeting was an incredibly valuable experience that left them with all kinds of new ideas that they wanted to go begin to explore on their own after having been introduced to them for the first time.
So if you’re interested in a rip-roaring, topic-jumping, wide-ranging discussion about all things test-related (and otherwise too as we slide into ASP.NET MVC and other reasonably unrelated topics!) then surf on over and check out the videos.
And if you want to visit a meeting where you can be assured that the conversation will not stray from the narrowly-stated published topic, then I think there are any number of more traditional user groups out there that will give attendees the opportunity to sit through a pre-canned powerpoint that never varies from the planned meeting topics.
December Meeting Skipped
We will be skipping the December meeting slot since the 4th Wednesday of the month of December is actually Christmas Eve, but we will be back in January with a topic that has yet to be determined (and may not be adhered to even if we pick it and announce it! )
If you can make it, we hope to see you the 4th Wednesday in January in NYC.