Masticate and Cogitate

If you're anything like me, you're passionate about programming. So passionate that you try and make other people around you as interested in programming as you are. Some days it can be frustrating to know that when your co-workers go home, they have better things to do then messing with LINQ or trying to piece together a complex design pattern.

So how do you get the people around you excited? You can buy books for them (a la Garry Shutlers library) but as a commenter on that post rightly points out, "The other developers on the team [...] need to be willing to spend time outside of work to going through the books and learn new things".

The outside of work issue is the key. What you need to do is make people interested in learning stuff inside work hours. Lunch-breaks are perfect for this. People tend to waste a good percentage of an hour slowly eating whilst WILFing* around the Internet.

For the last two weeks I've been running Lunch'n'Learn sessions every Monday. A Lunch'n'Learn is just a fancy term for sitting around on your lunch-break and watching something educational on a projector while you eat. In our case the videos have been dnrTV episodes (66 and 35). So far I've had a fairly positive response from both attendees and management and it looks like the initiative will continue with some of our other offices wanting to get in on the action.

So anyway, the next evil plan on the agenda for the Lunch'n'Learn sessions is to see if I can open them up to non-Fujitsu employees. Before I broach the subject with the boss though I wanted to gauge the community interest. So how about it? Would you you give up an hour every Monday to learn something?

*WILFing in this context means What I was Looking For and is a term used to describe the kind of browsing that starts at the search engine and ends when you realize that an hour (and probably about 30 topics) have passed by. There are other meanings.
Posted by: Mike Minutillo
Last revised: 27 May, 2011 02:42 PM History


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