It's the Ranger4 #DevOpsFriday5 series - today's contributor is JP Morgenthal. He's DevOpstastic!
1) What's your preferred definition of DevOps?
This question has very much been a journey for me. I first wrote about DevOps in July of 2011. At that point in my journey, DevOps represented IT's version of the Haymarket Riots. The oppressed and overloaded workers rising up against their unreasonable taskmasters. Slowly, for me, DevOps became a way to express fixing the problems associated with delivery of applications both technically and organisationally. Now, I'm very much in the camp that DevOps is a symptom of an IT dysfunction surrounding application delivery. So, if someone were to say to me now, "we're doing DevOps," I'd be inclined to agree with them seeing as what I hear is, "we have issues delivering applications to the business."
2) When people 'do' DevOps, what's the most common mistake you see them make?
Given my answer to #1 I'd have to say the most common mistake is thinking they 'do' DevOps. However, I see a number of widespread mistakes, such as thinking moving to agile SDLC equals DevOps, using proprietary scripts for automation, believing a tool will fix the governance and policy issues limiting continuous delivery. This is not a "do it and done" initiative, it's about continual improvement. There is a maturity model and I have yet to see any organization that has moved beyond repeatable processes.
3) How do you recommend an organisation new to DevOps start?
Start with an honest assessment. If you can't be honest due to internal politics agree to go with an outside consultant. Assess the true bottlenecks and constraints that limit the ability of IT to release software into production in a manner that is both reliable and responsive. Working backwards from the goal will reveal issues that travel all the way upstream to the point of development. Then develop a plan that aims to mitigate these bottlenecks and constraints.
4) What's your prediction for what DevOps will look like in 2020?
Wow, that's only five years from now. I'd have to say businesses will probably end up taking a route of bimodal IT. The existing core systems will probably see very little impact from DevOps initiatives as the goal of going bimodal is to limit the impact on an area that has demonstrated little ability to embrace change. The other side of bimodal is the formation of a team focused on delivering the digital presence for the business: mobile, web, cloud, etc. This team will leverage industry best practices formulated by the likes of Etsy and Netflix and will deliver in a powerful new way for businesses.
5) Where do you like to go to get a DevOps hit?
I have a #DevOps stream in Hootsuite that is watching Twitter and I check out DevOps.com daily.
About JP Morgenthal:
JP Morgenthal is an internationally renowned thought leader in the areas of IT transformation, modernisation, and cloud computing. JP has served in executive roles within major software companies and technology startups. Areas of expertise include strategy, architecture, application development, infrastructure and operations, cloud computing, DevOps, and integration. He routinely advises C-level executives on the best ways to use technology to derive business value. JP is a published author with four trade publications with his most recent being “Cloud Computing: Assessing the Risks”. JP holds both a Masters and Bachelors of Science in Computer Science from Hofstra University.
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