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Nothin’ But .NET Denver

14 June 2009

JP Boodhoo

JP Boodhoo brought his Nothin’ But .NET class to Denver for the first time. My co-worker had taken the class last year and raved about it. It really improved his game, and we persuaded our company to send five of us to this one.

It’s worth its weight in gold.

JP introduced fundamental programming design concepts, then had us work in small groups to complete challenges, working towards a goal of designing an application top-down with test-driven development. All of us learned that we did not understand some of these basic concepts as well as we should. JP opened my eyes to a whole new level of encapsulating and dividing code; it was like discovering that atoms are made up of smaller particles.

Don’t get me wrong: it’s a ton of work. On Thursday and Friday, we met for breakfast at 8:30 and coded til 4 in the morning — that’s 15-20 hours a day. Especially as fatigue set in, the challenges become so hard that we as a class struggled to complete them. Some days we ate at the same boring fast food restaurants again and again so we could get back to coding. We as a class worked hard together and became friends.

JP is a master programmer. I mean that in the sense of a martial arts master. He is human, after all, but he has honed his skills and become an expert. Things we had to intellectualize just flow from his heart and mind to his hands at an astounding rate.

Yet the course was more than programming; it was philosophy. We spent a lot of time talking about where we’ve been, what made us choose programming, where we stand today, and where we’re headed with our lives. It was food for thought for some, a wake-up call to others of us. I certainly have formed some plans to achieve some goals I’d only fantasized about before.

Namasté, JP, and thank you.

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