Quick Win - The Rubber Duck Technique

May 01, 2022


Have you ever been working on something, and it feels like it should just be working, but it is not? You spend hours troubleshooting to find it is something simple in the end and you feel like an idiot? Trust me, you are not alone! We've all been there. In this Quick Win, I'll share with you a very simple technique that can save you time (and self-deprecation)!

DNN Dave

DNN Platform

DNN Community


0:02 [Music]
0:10 hello hello it's dana and dave i hope
0:12 everybody is doing well today
0:14 i want to talk to you today about a
0:17 technique
0:18 that can well change your life
0:21 now
0:22 we all love
0:23 a good cup of joe yeah
0:29 that is good
0:31 you know it
0:32 gives you a little bit of boost doesn't
0:34 it especially if you have the
0:35 caffeinated gun
0:37 as developers that's primarily who i'm
0:39 going to talk to today but
0:41 this technique that i'm going to talk
0:43 about also applies to other areas of
0:45 your life as well
0:47 how many times
0:49 as a developer
0:51 have you been working on
0:54 a
0:55 particular solution in code or you're
0:58 trying to fix an issue
1:00 and
1:01 you get everything just right you get
1:03 that feature complete
1:06 and all of a sudden
1:08 out of nowhere
1:11 it just
1:12 is not
1:14 working
1:15 and you're like what the
1:18 and you know it's times like that
1:22 where
1:24 what if you could call
1:27 a friend phone a friend
1:30 or what if there was a hotline
1:35 where you could call and smite could
1:36 just
1:37 give you the answer right away
1:40 well
1:42 listen i know you're gonna think i'm
1:43 crazy
1:45 but there is such a hotline
1:48 yep
1:50 yep
1:52 it has to do with a
1:54 duck
1:57 this happens to be a really
1:59 smart duck though
2:02 i mean you can tell
2:03 he's got
2:04 his
2:07 ear
2:08 thing in here i mean he's a true support
2:10 desk kind of duck
2:13 notice he's holding a computer this duck
2:15 knows
2:16 a lot about computers
2:18 and he knows a lot about many different
2:21 kinds of code
2:23 i don't care if you're working in c
2:25 sharp
2:25 or you're working in
2:27 typescript or you're working in angular
2:30 or react or
2:32 view js or whatever it happens to be
2:36 this duck's pretty smart
2:38 so
2:40 you're probably wondering okay
2:42 you're crazy
2:44 ducks
2:45 can't
2:46 help me with my code
2:49 what are they going to do are they going
2:51 to just
2:53 look at my code and say uh yeah right
2:56 right
2:57 there's the issue right there
3:00 are they really going to do that i don't
3:02 know
3:03 probably
3:04 not right
3:06 that's crazy
3:09 well come to find out there is
3:12 this technique or method
3:15 it does involve a duck
3:17 and of the rubber duck
3:19 bath time kind of
3:22 way
3:23 but at your desk
3:25 now
3:27 a good friend of mine recently
3:29 gave me a shirt
3:32 and i'm wearing it now let me see if i
3:34 can get it into focus here
3:38 let's see can you see that let's see yep
3:42 let me go back to the big screen here
3:46 can you see this
3:47 yep
3:48 explain it
3:52 have you tried to explain it to the
3:54 rubber duck i know that was really
3:55 awkward but i've got these headphones in
3:58 and the the cable's only so long
4:02 so
4:05 have you tried explaining it to the
4:06 rubber duck
4:08 well
4:09 this is nothing
4:11 new many of you may already know about
4:12 this
4:13 and for those that do
4:15 maybe this will provide some little
4:17 entertainment and a different
4:18 perspective on it
4:19 but for those of you
4:21 those of you that have not heard of it
4:23 well
4:25 the idea here
4:27 is to
4:28 first
4:29 get you a rubber duck
4:32 now your rubber duck
4:33 could look like this one
4:36 or it could just be a basic rubber duck
4:38 you know that you played with as a kid
4:40 in the bathtub
4:42 you set it on your desk
4:45 and
4:46 when those moments come
4:48 where
4:49 you just can't figure out what went
4:51 wrong
4:52 because hey you didn't change anything
4:54 did you it just all of a sudden
4:57 stopped working
4:59 well
5:00 i think we all can appreciate that
5:02 computers just don't lie
5:05 very rarely
5:06 is it actually a problem that we didn't
5:10 cause
5:12 so
5:13 the idea is
5:15 you look at your duck on the on the desk
5:18 you say hey duck
5:21 here's what i'm trying to do let me show
5:23 you my code
5:24 and i'm going to explain
5:27 what it is that i am trying to
5:28 accomplish with this code
5:30 and i'm going to walk you line by line
5:33 of what it is that
5:35 i'm doing and where i believe the issue
5:39 is related to or anything like that
5:43 and lo and behold what happens is
5:46 as you're explaining it to the duck
5:50 the duck is intently listening by the
5:53 way and very interested in
5:56 what you have to say
5:58 because
5:59 it's a smart duck
6:02 but as you explain that
6:04 to the duck
6:05 oftentimes what happens
6:09 is you recognize something that you
6:12 could have been staring at for hours
6:15 right just trying to figure out maybe
6:16 you left and tried to come back with a
6:18 fresh perspective too because you'd
6:20 already wasted so much time trying to
6:21 figure out the little issue
6:24 um because that's what it always ends up
6:25 being right it's usually something
6:27 really
6:27 simple
6:29 and maybe even stupid it could be a typo
6:31 i mean how many times have you gotten a
6:33 syntax there and just didn't realize it
6:37 so as you're explaining it to the duck
6:39 you realize
6:40 hey there's my issue i found it
6:44 but it's that process of verbalizing it
6:47 and explaining it
6:48 to the duck
6:51 now
6:53 you may be saying listen this is silly
6:55 i'm not gonna put a duck on my desk
6:59 well i mean i kind of had the same
7:00 thought even though i wear the shirt
7:02 proudly
7:03 of the duck
7:06 i
7:07 took a little different route with mine
7:10 because
7:12 not every issue
7:14 requires the same
7:17 kind of perspective to fix right
7:20 and that is dependent upon my mood
7:24 as well
7:25 because if i'm
7:27 you know i've got the music pranking in
7:29 the background you know i'm jam
7:32 you know got it going on
7:34 i'm feeling pretty good but
7:36 a little frustrated
7:38 i may want a different kind of response
7:41 from
7:42 the duck
7:44 then i do if i am just
7:47 ticked off
7:48 and
7:50 i'm at my wit's end
7:52 so sometimes i could do with a little
7:54 bit of humor just kind of help me
7:56 through it
7:57 sometimes i need a little more direct
8:00 response
8:02 sometimes i just need somebody to refute
8:04 me you know regardless of what i say
8:07 just to drive me to find the answer
8:10 in a different way or quicker
8:13 so
8:14 here's what i've done
8:15 on my desk
8:17 i have used
8:20 these funko pop
8:22 from the office
8:26 so you can see here i've got
8:28 jim halpert you know and i've got
8:31 uh michael and i've got
8:34 dwight
8:37 and i've got
8:39 some others
8:40 pam
8:41 and i've got kevin
8:44 and
8:45 i've got daryl
8:48 each of these have very different
8:50 personalities right
8:51 so when i was saying a few minutes ago
8:55 sometimes i just need somebody to
8:58 reject any idea that i have regardless
9:02 i'm gonna pick up
9:04 my dwight
9:06 here's my dwight by the way
9:08 i'm gonna say dwight and he's gonna say
9:10 false
9:11 yeah right away so
9:14 the reason i bring this up is because
9:17 you need to find your rubber duck
9:20 sometimes people can work for this
9:23 um
9:26 sometimes
9:28 and
9:29 man i just realized i have not been
9:32 sharing my screen
9:35 there is my
9:36 um
9:37 there's my office funko pop characters
9:40 so
9:41 yeah think about what i said just few
9:42 minutes ago and then look at this
9:43 picture and you'll see what i've done
9:45 here
9:45 and that's that's my desk right there
9:48 and so i've got my little funko pop
9:50 characters there and
9:52 depending on who i want uh what kind of
9:55 personality i'm expecting
9:57 back i kind of use it but find your own
10:00 you know funko pop or
10:02 whatever you know your own character
10:05 your own vibe maybe you're a star wars
10:07 fanatic or something like that and you
10:09 really want to kind of use some of the
10:10 characters and their personalities there
10:13 but it's important sometimes people can
10:15 work for this you know
10:16 but sometimes they'll get in the way too
10:19 you know because everybody has their own
10:20 perspective and ideas and
10:22 they start talking too much and it's
10:24 like you're not really just explaining
10:26 things
10:27 and trying to enlighten yourself on what
10:29 happened
10:30 without going down a few rabbit holes or
10:32 potentially there
10:34 um but that's a good technique too i
10:36 mean co coding and things like that i do
10:38 it all the time
10:39 i love it there's a lot of benefits to
10:41 it that far outweigh just finding a you
10:43 know a solution to an annoying problem
10:45 there
10:46 but find your rubber duck
10:50 and i hope this technique helps you
10:53 in
10:54 your issues that you have from time to
10:56 time in code and you're trying to just
10:59 find the answer there
11:01 so
11:02 i'm dna and dave if you like this
11:03 content
11:05 please hit the like and the subscribe
11:08 please little notification bell um that
11:10 way you'll get notified whenever new
11:12 content comes out i've got a whole long
11:14 list
11:15 of content
11:17 here but if you have ideas
11:19 that you want to hear
11:21 about subject matter
11:23 let me know in the comments below
11:25 and i'll put your idea into the queue so
11:29 thanks take care and have a great
11:33 day


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