Why you must use Git and how you use it

If you're part of the group, I assume your research requires you to programme quite a bit. Even more, I assume your research requires you to make changes to your code on a daily basis.

So, how do you go about this?

  • Do you keep different folders for each change?
  • How do you backup your code - do you put everything on Dropbox each night? (If you back up at all!?)
  • How do you find exactly what changes you made - do you read through your files and try to find them manually?
  • How do you share your code with other people (your supervisors, your collaborators?)? Do you send zip files over e-mail?

These are common issues that each coder runs into at some point, and luckily, there are tools that make all these tasks very very easy and really really quick.

Github and Bitbucket have really changed the software development process recently. Many projects, such as the Open Source Brain project already use Github. The underlying tool that they use is called Git. It's simple enough for small projects to use and also efficient enough to manage the more than 15 million lines of code that make the Linux Kernel - written by thousands of different people.

In this talk, I'm going to try to convince you that if you write any code, irrespective of what language it is in and how much it is, you must use source code management - preferably Git. To do this, I'm going to show you how to use easily Git on a daily basis, show you how to collaborate using Git, and then show off some advanced features of Git that you may need once in a while.

If you'd like to follow the talk better and use the commands as I show them, please consider bringing a laptop with Git installed on it. On Linux - Ubuntu variants and Fedora etc., you should be able to install it using your package manager. On Windows, you'll need to install it from here: https://git-scm.com/download/win On Mac, you'll need to get it from here: http://git-scm.com/download/mac

If you do have any questions about installing Git, please feel free to e-mail me off-list.

Date: 18/09/2015
Time: 16:00
Location: LB252

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