Once again, I’m doing reader question Monday on a Tuesday. I have no good excuses this time, either. We arrived last week in San Diego, which is beautiful. So, I’ll just flat out admit that I spent the weekend strolling beaches, eating lobster tacos, drinking craft beers, looking up at the stars and just generally enjoying life in a way that involved no writing of blog posts. I regret nothing.
So let’s to reader question Monday on a Tuesday. This is actually a question that just came in today as I was gearing up to write about TDD and remote teams. It caught my attention, so I’ll give about the fastest turnaround time I’ve ever done on a question.
I recently stumbled upon this article: https://jeffknupp.com/blog/2014/04/15/how-devops-is-killing-the-developer/
Which seems to lump Full-Stack dev in with DevOps, and discards DevOps, on the premise that the full-stack dev is good-for-the-org-bad-for-the-dev. I know you’ve weighed in against the full-stack dev with preference for specialization. I wonder if you believe this also means DevOps is DOE, or if there’s still room for DevOps in your mind (or perhaps more broadly speaking, for startup-like, feature-teams so often found in Agile/Scrum orgs)?
If you don’t like DevOps, what do you recommend instead to manage the entire release automation process, and everything else it entails?
Alright. There’s a lot for me to work through here, so let’s break things up a little.
DevOps (And Full Stack) is Killing “The Developer?”
First, let me recap briefly the article’s thesis. And I’m really going to try to be gentle here and non-objectionable. I trade in blog posts for a living these days, and slugging it out with random people on the internet has worn as thin as it can possibly wear to me. I’d really rather not argue with this Jeff Knupp, and I can certainly empathize with waging a vigorous campaign to make your own job more fun.
The article’s thesis is, essentially, this, from the perspective of a salaried employee in the enterprise.
I hate the DevOps (and full stack) movements because I like writing code and they result in me writing less code.
The author might object to this thesis, but that’s really the message. It asserts the superiority of the software developer as compared to other individual contributor roles, and then argues that DevOps and full stack (and forced skill diversification in general) are good for the employer, but bad for the employee. (Although he then curiously argues that it’s also bad for the employer, since they’re “overpaying” for non-development labor.)