a reckoning for tech by the humans that work with it

The pendulum swings towards ops. TechReckoning Dispatch v3n13


If you read nothing else this week, check out The Briefing List announcement below. Thanks!

Hi friends,

I caught IBM’s Open Cloud Summit in SF this week. Lightning talks FTW! Recommended if it comes to your town.

The speakers gave a tour through this new IT place we’re headed, and they called it DevOps, but as usual the term served with plasticity, standing in for many concepts as were needed. The talks from Rich Miller and Damon Edwards were the best — both real-life reports from the trenches, and they both had in common the conclusion that just Dev + Ops alone is insufficient for actual transformation. The participation of all the parts of the Tribe Formerly Known As IT are required, and especially the security, compliance, governance sorts of folks.

Look, the origin story of DevOps was a placeholder name because Agile Infrastructure was too long. And yes, DevOps is about Dev + Ops and increasing software value through increasing release velocity. But another part of the conversation has to be about Day 2 Operations — running this cloud stuff in production — and that takes the rest of IT.

Everything gets overhyped before reality sets in (see the Gartner Hype Cycle, the Most True Thing they’ve ever done.) We are going through this with cloud (turns out it’s not magic!) and we’re seeing the same with developers. Yes, software and APIs eat the world; and yes, in an age of computational abundance, we have enough gas that developers can put the pedal to the metal. But somebody still has to take care of resiliency and compliance and the rest. If you are an infrastructure person, you have a role to play in this cloud-oriented future. The details and technical interfaces that you control will change over time — but they were going to change anyway.

This is happening very quickly in IT geologic terms. One of the articles (that I can’t put my hands on ATM) pointed out that large enterprises are moving even faster than predicted. All this data is pointing in the same direction: IT as a Service: From build to consume (Elumalai et al., McKinsey). Enterprise IT pros see most workloads in the cloud by 2018 (Sharon Gaudin, CIO).Hybrid Clouds Dominate in the Enterprise: IBM Study (Daryl Taft, Eweek)

Wait for the next batch of case studies as many of these projects fail or never get off the ground. But it’s happening and your next job is happening with it. More on that later. People have been asking us about our business. TechReckoning has two parts. The first part is a community/media publisher. Along with this newsletter and some experimentation with our web site, we produce podcasts for clients. We’ve also got some amazing new projects in the pipeline that we’ll be talking about soon.

The second part is consulting, which is going well with a team of four now. We work with vendors on community and blogger programs, user groups, and social media. For example, we are just finishing a project with Cohesity that helped them reach out to many vExperts, and they even briefly won a Best of VMworld award this year before losing with a technicality. Check them out if you haven’t had a chance. In the future, we’re all going to have to worry more about data management. You thought VM sprawl was bad?

So part of this consulting business is like public relations for bloggers. Bad PR people suck because they bug people who don’t want to be bugged, and they don’t stop even when asked. On the other hand, I know from experience that the right invitation at the right time is awesome. A briefing with a vendor gives you a deeper understanding of the product, it gives you something to blog about, and it can form a deeper relationship with the company, which then gives you a lifeline to the vendor when needed for your day job. Win-win all the way around. So how do we make the whole process more like a welcome opportunity and less like a dinnertime phone call from your least favorite charity? So I came up with this experiment:

Introducing The Blogger Briefing

If you’re a blogger, and you want an occasional briefing from a vendor, just sign up here with The Briefing List. I’ll work with the vendors to make sure they have something worth talking about, and I’ll use the list to see who is interested. We’ll then set up briefings and you’ll be able to give feedback afterwards. We’ll start simple and see what it turns into. (If you’re a vendor and want a grown-up technical conversation with some bloggers, hit me up.)

You’ve heard of “technical debt”? Well I’ve got “giveaway debt”: I haven’t mailed out a damn thing yet. And now we add last week’s t-shirt winner is Keiran Shelden. I also turned up three more XL sized shirts — a vNerd 2016, a green Intel Snap, and an exclusive William Lam “Fork Off — Instant Clone” Star Wars parody. Hit me up or they get stuffed in the packets for the previous winners.

The latest Geek Whisperers is good! Keep Learning and Keeping Connections After Changing Jobs with Erin Banks — Ep 119.

And Gregg Robertson recommends: “Favourite AWS learning resource has to be ACloudGuru ones. Brilliant resources that are super cheap.”

Two questions: 1. More articles? They’re on Twitter, but should I discuss a few here? 2. Listening to people talk about tweaking out their iOS 10 setups makes me wonder — are you a tweaker or a defaulter? When I was a wee lad I tweaked out my X-Windows to the max — I even had left-hand scroll bars. My .emacs and .bashrc files were things of beauty. Now? I can use anything out of the box because I change no defaults. You?

Photo credits: jtroyer at the Exploratorium and Ozneo. For more groovy links, check out TechReckoning on TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn. If you like this newsletter, forward it to somebody who needs it more than you. Copyright © 2016 TechReckoning, All rights reserved.