[development] Distributed Pairprogramming for Drupal

Eike Starkmann eike.starkmann at fu-berlin.de
Thu Oct 15 12:39:05 UTC 2009

larry at garfieldtech.com wrote:
> Just one point to clarify, there is no "Drupal Team" that could decide
> en masse to use a tool like this.  Drupal is so distributed that we all
> have our own development workflows using a variety of tools, often in
> our basements rather than our offices (although there, too).  So "Could
> use and Drupal benefit" is really the wrong question to ask.
I know that there is nobody like an manager in an office to tell the
people what tool to use while developing, my question is if there are
workflows in which Saros might improve the development, for example if
there are a couple of people how can "meet" within Saros and do pair
reviews or just working at the module together. At least this is also
something I would like to find out, if you say "No, we cannot use this
because we are all working too distributed and in different time zones"
this is a result for me but I strongly believe that it can be done and
improve development, but it also depends in the workflows you have.
> That said, I'm sure such a tool would prove useful to certain developers
> if they choose to use it.
Of course the developer himself has to choose it.
> Is it language-dependent?  Vis, most Eclipse devs work on Java, not PHP,
> so I am always wary of tools that may end up being centric to one
> particular language's development idiosyncrasies.
Saros is not language dependent, as far as other plugins are following
the eclipse guidelines. For PHP we have tested PDT, Aptana, Zent and
PHPeclipse. We have a full overview on this page:
If you would like to give Saros a try and something is missing, please
let me know and we will try to but it in the next release.

Greets, Eike
> --Larry Garfield
> Eike Starkmann wrote:
>> Dear Drupal Team,
>> My name is Eike Starkmann and I'm working working as part of the Saros
>> Team at the Freie University in Berlin.
>> Saros is an Eclipse plugin for collaborative text editing and
>> distributed pair programming, i.e. it allows two or more developers to
>> work together in real-time on the same files. It is similar to Gobby,
>> SubEthaEdit or Google Docs but focuses on programming in Eclipse.
>> It is my master thesis to figure out whether Saros is useful when
>> developing Free/Open Source Software. I already was in contact with 
>> to other projects, for example Typo3 and got some good response.
>> In my opinion Drupal can benefit from Saros because I think it brings
>> many advantages to Open Source Software development:
>> * Distributed Pair Programming is like a live peer review. This should
>> help with finding good design, get rid of bugs, increase readability,
>> etc.
>> * Transferring knowledge should be easier to do when more than one
>> person look at and work with the same code. This should also help to
>> give new developers an introduction to the code.
>> * In contrast to screen sharing, Saros only shares your actions inside
>> of Eclipse with regards to the project you are both working on (think
>> privacy) and you are still independent to explore the project on your
>> own.
>> Saros can be useful in the following contexts:
>> * Working on complicated problems in the code
>> * Performing code reviews
>> * Debugging
>> * Code presentation
>> * Code sprints
>> * Introducing new developers to the project
>> * ...
>> What do you think? Could you and Drupal benefit from doing pair
>> programming using Saros?
>> If you are interested in Saros but still curious about how it works
>> please visit our website or feel free to contact me.
>> I hope you will find Saros useful and give me feedback.
>> Kind regards, Eike Starkmann
>> Website: https://www.inf.fu-berlin.de/w/SE/DPP
>> Update Site: http://dpp.sf.net/update
>> Saros @ SF: http://sourceforge.net/projects/dpp/
>> Programming Languages Supported by Saros :
>> https://www.inf.fu-berlin.de/w/SE/DPPCompatiblePlugin

Eike Starkmann
This message is part of my Master thesis research. Feel free to contact
my advisors in case of inappropriate behavior on my side:
christopher.oezbek at fu-berlin.de and stephan.salinger at fu-berlin.de

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