What is CITCON?CITCON or the Continuous Integration and Testing Conference is a world-wide series of free Open Spaces events for developer-testers, tester-developers and anyone else with an interest in this subject.This conference brings together people from every corner of the software development industry to discuss Continuous Delivery and the practices (e.g. Continuous Integration and Testing) that go along with it. This includes everything from Test Driven Development to Continuous Deployment, from code metrics to post-release monitoring. Attendees include developer-testers, tester-developers, devops and other people looking for cross-functional solutions to make software better!We were there!Colleagues from Pentalog had the opportunity to join the 11th European Edition of this event, which took place in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, alongside attendants from countries such as: Finland, UK, Hungary, Croatia, Germany, US etc. They’ll be taking you on a walk through of their CITCON experience:The two-day event has an innovative format: it helps you learn as much as you can using solely the topics that are submitted and voted for. Friday is usually the day dedicated to networking and to choosing the topics that are debated on Saturday. After submitting our own topic: Adina’s “Docker Birthday Training” we voted for the subjects we were interested in.
Saturday is dedicated fully to learning -3 parallel tracks covered 30 sessions with topics such as: Self Organizing Teams, <Frustrated?>, change your words to change mindsets, VM Managements Solutions, Docker Training, Pair Programming done Right, Ask Me Jenkins; Building communities; Mentoring & Coaching; Deployment Patterns; Integrating GUI testing in the CI environment etc.We each took part in our go to subjects. And we didn’t even need to employ the “law of two feet”. This means that you can attend a session and if you considered you took the info you need, you can stand up and go to another session.Here’s a quick tour of two sessions we loved best:<Frustrated?>, change your words to change mindsets with Jeff: During the one on one dialog that I had with Jeff Fredrick, I learned the importance of communication during development processes and the gamification of frustration. The first concept refers to the continuous monitoring of your own frustration levels employing the “Why” and “When”, communicating them to other persons involved. If this is not done, people tend to invent reasons why they think things are not working, most of the times involuntarily. Monitoring frustration can be a tedious task. A good technique to make this fun is to treat yourself whenever you become aware of your frustration.Pair Programing Done Right with Paul Julius: Pair programming, or “pairing”, is when two developers work together to solve a problem when normally only one would work on the solution. Normally, this technique faces oppositions from team members (in the form of various excuses) or the decision makers involved in the process. However, whether we want to give it credit or not, Pair Programing has a lot of advantages:- different approaches of the same problem- fewer mistakes and greater quality of code because your pair will always keep you in check- knowledge sharing and the possibility to avoid redesign and duplication of codePairing techniques we discussed include:- Ping-pong style: One dev writes the test, the other one writes the implementation; then they switch roles and repeat the procedure.- Baseball Coach style: Senior writes the test, gives to junior to write code to pass. Iterate.- Rotation style: each team member has to pair with all the other members.There have been so many sessions and interesting info we each scribbled down as we rotated in different rooms and we invite you to experience them by taking a look at our facebook album.The event ends with the traditional AHA! moments exchange and the afterparty!ConclusionsCITCON was altogether a compilation of hot topics out of which, most importantly, we had the freedom to choose. We enjoyed the conference organization model and the quality of the sessions as well as the speaker’s inspiring presence. We can hardly wait for CITCON Europe 2017! Remember: “Knowledge comes from learning. Experience comes from Living. Continuous Integration is about collaboration.”