Defeating the Minisculus Challenge

19 October 2010 Defeating the Minisculus Challenge

At the Software Craftsmanship 2010 event, Eden Development launched their Minisculus Challenge, a fun little coding kata inspired by the WWII code breakers of Bletchley Park.

Finding myself with a bit of time on my hands, I decided to have a go. It's been a while since I did this kind of thing and I didn't expect to win, but I thought I'd have fun doing it and I did.

My knowledge of cryptography, even basic crypto, is limited and I don't have a traditional computer science background so I tackled this the only way I know how; object-oriented analysis, TDD and refactoring as I go, letting the solution emerge as I refactor. You can view my solution on Github.

Quite to my surprise, I won! The question is, what to do with the prize: £100 Amazon gift voucher?

If you don't follow me on Twitter, or in case you missed it, then I'm very happy to announce on my blog for the first time, Julie and I are expecting our first child in April 2011.

The birth of a child is a wonderful thing and there will no doubt be many precious moments that I will want to capture on photo or film, so I've been thinking about investing in a new camera and my first foray into the world of the DSLR.

I don't want to spend a fortune on a high-end DSLR; I am still a photography newbie but after shopping around the Nikon D3000 seems like exactly what I want - not too expensive and it comes with what looks like an excellent guide mode to help me get the best out of the camera.

I've been thinking about buying it for a while and so I've decided to put my voucher towards the cost of the camera. Thanks, Eden!