What Is DevOps?

Here is a list of things:

  1. Summiting Mount Everest
  2. Memorizing Pi to two-thousand digits
  3. Reading a Thomas Pynchon novel with complete comprehension

All of these things I feel more confident about than defining DevOps. Dylan Smith is a braver man than I, so he published a piece giving it a shot. Like all things DevOps, I’m sure many will disagree, but it might just be broad enough to be acceptable. Just because it’s broad, doesn’t mean it’s inaccurate. There’s a deceiving simplicity to it, as evidenced by the solutions to some of the conflict inherent in DevOps. For a seemingly impenetrable topic, Dylan makes a concise and coherent case. I won’t spoil his overall point, so give it a read if you’re interested.

Western Devs comments:


As with any pipeline, there is likely a bottleneck somewhere that restricts the flow of value. Lean is all about identifying and attacking these bottlenecks. 10 years ago – before Agile – the bottleneck was probably Analysis, or maybe Test. With Agile development becoming mainstream over the last decade, it has done a pretty good job of attacking those bottlenecks, resulting in analysis and test becoming more just-in-time, spread out over the course of a project, and embedded in the regular dev workflows. They are no longer the bottleneck.

A new bottleneck has arisen, that is at the boundary of the dev/test team and the operations team. These tend to be very separate teams, with a clear handoff between them. This results in friction, and a bottleneck in the flow of value.


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About the author

Rich Stroffolino

Rich has been a tech enthusiast since he first used the speech simulator on a Magnavox Odyssey². Current areas of interest include ZFS, the false hopes of memristors, and the oral history of Transmeta.

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