Monday, 17 December 2012

Development Automation - The Revolution

In response to:

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-12-17/google-s-gmail-outage-is-a-sign-of-things-to-come

It is really great to see an article on continuous deployment in the mainstream media, as it is an issue about which I am extremely enthusiastic.

When we delay the release of a piece of our work, the psychological importance that we place on the quality of that work increases, so we spend more time manually finessing and polishing the work (often resulting in more delay, and possibly also raising the psychological barriers to release still higher).

This is all well and good when all testing and quality control must, by necessity, be manual. However, this is less and less common today, as automated testing and deployment practices become more common (In the form of Test Driven Development & Continuous Integration).

This (extremely) high level of automation and the work practices that go with it, together offer a revolutionary step-change in the way that we engineer complex systems:- a revolution that companies like Google and Netflix have embraced; a revolution that the rest of us ignore at our peril.

Instead of simply engineering products, we must engineer organizations and systems that produce world-beating products time and time again.

That is the revolution of DevOps, of Test Engineering, and of Development Automation.

And that is the only sane way to go about making complex systems today.