Programmers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Surely two people sitting together doing countless other jobs you would see the same benefits. Why has programming been singled out for this practice?

share|improve this question

migrated from May 6 '11 at 13:32

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

I think programming has been "singled out" for this because you're much more likely to read about "pair programming" than "pair anything else"--you are, after all, a programmer yourself! – Tikhon Jelvis May 6 '11 at 18:48

It actually hasn't been singled out at all. Think about the terminology: driver and navigator. Commercial aviation has long benefitted from this technique with pilots and copilots. Most jobs where detail is extremely important can benefit from working in pairs. You will never see a brain surgeon alone in a surgery room hacking away; the team around him are checking over the work, making sure the surgeon is not forgetting anything (like a sponge).

share|improve this answer
+1 for providing the actual examples in other professions. – Dan McGrath May 6 '11 at 14:31

Any job that requires more thinking than actual manual work benefits from pairing.

share|improve this answer
Can you give examples? I can think about lots of counterexamples: Mathematicians normally work alone and only meet to discuss stuff from time to time. – Giorgio Dec 18 '14 at 12:12

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.