“Would you refactor a snowman?” Using empathy to power your refactoring decisions

Justin Hurst (07.Jun.2018 at 14:00, 50 min)
Talk at OpenWest Conference 2018 (English - US)

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Have you ever wasted a day on a meaningless refactoring? What could you have accomplished instead? How do you know what refactorings are worth your effort?

When you find yourself in such doubt, there’s someone who can help you: your audience. Who are you doing this work for - your end users? Your fellow engineers? Or even future you?

This talk explores techniques for focusing on value. Through a series of examples, we’ll learn how to:

Shrink your world down to only what’s relevant
Use tests to keep your eye on the target
Ask interesting questions about the future … but save the answers for later

Through these techniques, you’ll be able to spot valuable refactoring opportunities while avoiding the swamp of distractions. With your newfound coding wisdom, you’ll be the envy of your fellow architects.

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