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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Remote Pairing


Remote Pairing

In the last few weeks I had an effective remote pairing experience. I'm locate in Brazil and my pair is located in USA.
That experience gave me some thoughts about remote pairing that I would like to share here.

Tools

To share the screen, we used VNC (TightVNC to be more specific). It works well and you can config the compression and color resolution, what helps with slow connections.
To voice chatting we have used Skype, with a two-ear head-set. In my opinion the two-ear is very important, because it helps you to don't be disturbed by any noise from your local office.
Normally I use a two monitors set-up with a virtual-box filling one of the monitors, that helps to you not open your personal e-mail in a shared screen.

The pairs were in different timezones. Brazil is 4 hours ahead of USA ET. For this reason we did not pair for the entire work-day. And it was a good thing, as both sides had time to do other work which is not related to the story at hand.
Also we used the Pomodoro Technique that was good to things like going to bathroom, smoking, drink water, cellphones, etc...

Tips

TDD. Use the ping-pong technique.
Turn on the video on Skype (Gtalk, Msn, whatever...) and raise your hand when you gonna start/stop driving.