Making katas to become a better software developer.



Had you ever asked yourself how to be a better software developer? What are the secrets of the bests?

All of us, at some moment we have been impressed by a martial artist doing movements and techniques that looked impossible, or maybe by a musician playing our favorite song.

Everybody knows that, to become an expert, there’s only one way, and that’s to practice.

A musician plays melodies and scales, in the same way that a martial artist repeats the same exercise in order to get better.

So, as software developers we have to do the same: to practice.

A great way to practice is making katas, but, what’s a kata? a kata is a programming challenge that will help you to improve while doing it over and over again.

This terms was used for first time by Dave Thomas, author of the book The Pragmatic Programer, inpired by how martial artist practice series of exercises called katas.

The point of making katas is to make errors in a sand box code, and fix it over and over, instead of makig errors in our live code.

Advices to practice with katas.

  • Stay focused. As any other practice, it’s important to be focused in order to get into flow.

  • Test one thing at a time. Don’t try to do too much at the same time, focus in one thing and try to master it.

  • No pressure. There’s no pressure, you are working in a sandbox, if you break something, there is no consecuences, just learning.

  • Ask for feedbak.

  • Have fun.

Kata catalogue.

In you can find a list of some katas that you can use to start, for example;


As you can see, if you want to be a better software developer, you have to practice, and making katas is a great way to do it, try to do some of the previously listed katas and if you want some feedback write me a comment in twitter, I’m pretty sure we can learn something new together.