I <3 DevOps because I <3 Code: The means to our end

If you’ve spent any time looking at the items that I post, you’ve probably gathered that I’m a developer, but that I have a rather strange habit of not talking about code. I talk about build automation, source control, compiler output, virtualization, proxy servers, and continuous integration, but I barely talk about matters of code. So if I love coding, why do I spend my time talking talking about DevOps rather than code? A necessity of my love of code is a love of DevOps.

It’s rare to meet a developer that has no interest in code. Coding is like an irresistable calling, a siren song: hard to ignore even in the face of logic. As such, the desire of “I’d rather be coding” has sunk many a developer into a pit of small repeating problems. These small problems become an inescapable quicksand that stymies further progress to the point of being nothing more than violent thrashing.

So where does DevOps fit in to this? To me, DevOps is the philosphy that it’s better to stop coding and fix an underlying problem for an hour than it is to waste the full day in the name of “code”. More colloquially, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” 1 And this is why I focus so much energy on DevOps: I work with smart people doing cool stuff and we’d all “rather be coding”. We don’t have time to waste on manual builds, miscommunication, and manual configuration.

DevOps addresses the issues that keep my team and I from doing the thing that we love. DevOps allows us to develop for the long term, augmenting our ability to develop; It empowers us spend more time on the actual problems that matter.

So yes, I love DevOps, because I wouldn’t have the time to code without it.


  1. For my metric friends: “28.3 grams of prevention is worth 453 grams of cure.” :P ↩︎