Today I went to the Global Day of Coderetreat 2015 in Berlin. What is Coderetreat? In one sentence: It is a day-long event where you meet with strangers and pair program with a few of them in whatever language you want, doing TDD.
I stayed for four sessions, programming twice in C#, once in PHP and once in Java. It was a nice experience, but I probably will not attend another Coderetreat. It was well organized (ok, the promised breakfast was missing). We were about 50 people gathered in the offices of Wooga.
In the end it was about talking with others about how to approach the same problem over and over again, and practicing test driven development. It got old pretty fast. We always tried to implement Game of Life.
I know I should program at work more in the TDD style, yet I mostly know how to do TDD. Today I only learned few new things, if any. I think the time would be better spend if I used it to delve deeper into other areas, like Angular, MVC, EntityFramework or the like. Or create a site from scratch. That is why I did not stay for the last two sessions.
Coderetreat may be a good possiblity to get to know TDD and test out pair programming. Or attend it if you like to meet other programmers from diverse backgrounds.