A Longer Lever
Maybe it’s my age and an increasingly impatient temperament, but I now find traditional build and deployment cycles frustratingly slow and unsatisfying. To put things only slightly melodramatically, the grave beckons and I want to do more, and to do it faster.
A standard careerist way to satisfy this itch might be to move up the management chain and get my hands on more things with less project involvement, think project grunt -> project manager -> programme manager -> ... -> CIO/CDO.
But what if, like me, one prefers to remain a project grunt. Where to then?
The obvious answer is to become a mega-mechanised-project-grunt. Kind of like this one.
My search for more power began with technologies and tools. Proficiency with cloud infrastructure, platforms and services hold out particular promise as gantt chart smashing skills. Fluency with micro-service architectures and the broader philosophy behind them seems to be another. I’m currently researching and toying with these ideas and technologies in an effort to attach them to my Jaeger/CV.
However, a less sexy but inevitable question arises when looking beyond the technology.
How on earth do you convince someone to let you loose on their organisation with a 10 story tall death-dealing mega-robot?
DevOps is the label attached to most of the promising answers to this question. The concept is broad enough to cover all of my technological fixation but importantly extends outwards to incorporate processes, organisation, re-imagined/re-engineered workflows, and cultural practices to consider the characteristics of environments that truly are well adapted for the massively agile, and radically productive development/deployment cycles we're discussing.
DevOps challenges me as a tech-head to look past the tools, and consider the whole system and organisation that builds, maintains, operates and empowers them (“the battle ground”).
Embracing much that is fuzzy, social, and psychological this wider DevOps picture doesn't hold the same interest for me as that brand new shiny 'cloud-based' Kaiju slicing broadsword. But there’s no escaping its importance, and the need for its emergence.
Without it we're all stuck in the hanger.