Fog Creek Software
Discussion Board

Chat and Development

I noticed that the new JavaStudioCreator has a chat development tool(type) thing where you can chat with another developer and commit/work on the same code.

I dont use JavaStudioCreator, but I do use IRC as a way to communicate with other deveopers, is anybody using IM/IRC/Jabber for development.  I think it is way better than a 3 hour pointless meeting that occur every 2 weeks.

Berlin Brown
Thursday, July 1, 2004

I've never used chat during development, but i've
thought about it. Email has worked well enough
and i've curious how chat would improve things.

How does it help you get rid of the meetings?

son of parnas
Thursday, July 1, 2004

I've used IM for development tasks in the past where I was working on a geographically distributed team. It wasn't uncommon for us to use IM and phone simultaneously, in fact. Much easier to IM some code to somebody than to try to spell it out verbally! And more interactive than e-mail.

John C.
Thursday, July 1, 2004

Several times I have had to wait week/weeks because I cant complete confirmation on how to move forward on a project, so what do you do, you hold a meeting, what has to take place for a meeting,you have to get everybody together at the same time, you schedule the meeting 'next-week', point being that a week/weeks sometimes has to be wasted, when people could jack into a system and converse on a issue instantly.

I have only seen chat used by geek/techie types, young gals/guys who can type pretty fast and who spend a lot of time on the PC, and sometimes not all programmers/network-people are geeks, so maybe in the future this form of communication could be utilized more.

Berlin Brown
Thursday, July 1, 2004

For some forms of communication between developers, it is ideal.

It has the cut/paste ability of email with the loop tightness of a phone conversation.  Both are essential for certain things.

But, the previous poster is right - it is only usually younger guys with the quick fingers who "get it."

I've been trying to get an internal developer chat facility institutionalized at my workplace with almost no traction in the people who can make it happen - only the junior developers understand it.

Friday, July 2, 2004

On my last gig I had an old boss (60's).  He asked what a "chat server" was once.  He said he couldn't think of anything more boring or useless.

Then he went to send email to some colleagues on another continent.  Then he called them to tell them about it, since the email took so long to get there.

I'll never understand old people.

Sunday, July 4, 2004

> Email has worked well enough and i've curious how chat would improve things.

Sometimes you want to have a dialog.

Email is OK for one-way broadcast (Hey everyone, I've checked in Y and my status is X). For a two-way conversation, the round-trip delay for email can be minutes, hours, or days (as opposed to seconds for chat).

And, sometimes you're at a stage where you can write a 0pga e design document without input from other people, and email that. But there are other times when you want a dialog (Hey Joe. I see you're doing A in the source code. Why? I thought we were going to do B.) Chat is delivered more quickly, so it allows more back-and-forth.

If you like you can subsequently cut-and-paste your converversation from chat into email or a design document.

Chat is also better than email when you have a question to which you'd like an immediate answer.

Christopher Wells
Monday, July 5, 2004

*  Recent Topics

*  Fog Creek Home