Stuck? Get into the pairing mentality

This post is on the softer side of things. I was working on a Ruby exercism this morning alone in a coffeeshop and was just not getting anywhere. The problem was simple enough:

Write a function to convert from normal numbers to Roman Numerals

However trivial the problem was I was just spinning my wheels. It must have been an off day. I ended up with a mess of if statements that was seemingly leading nowhere. As I was about to stand up and get a coffee refill I found myself thinking, “Man, I wish I could grab a pair to figure this thing out.” I really just wanted another mind and pair of eyes to bounce ideas off of. I didn’t have a pair though so I did the next best thing: find a related video by Jim Weirich, RIP. I dug up Jim’s Roman Numerals Kata.

You could call it cheating to just go watch this video but I considered it brainstorming and collaboration. So, next time you’re stuck and can’t find a human pair, create the virtual equivalent.