The Evolving Modern SoftwareDevelopment Team

The Evolving Modern Software Development TeamThroughout its over half century of existence, the process of software development continues to evolve. Technological advancements are obvious, as faster processors and other innovations like new programming languages, databases, and automation impact the industry. Of course, we regularly cover the impacts ushered in by modern methodologies, especially Agile and DevOps.

Here is a quick overview of a typical organization – tools, methodology, languages – within the modern software engineering world. Use the information within as food for thought on your team’s development efforts. How does your company stack up against the new norm?

Commonalities amongst Today’s Software Engineering Companies

InfoWorld recently analyzed what similarities and standards are emerging within today’s software development shop. There’s no denying the importance of collaboration and communication in this era of DevOps. Reflecting this trend, software teams are increasingly using chat tools, like Slack, instead of email to communicate.

Source control is another important function within any software engineering team. Earlier this century, code repositories like Source Safe, PCM, and CVS were the rage. These days, Git holds a dominant status due to its support for distributed version control. Sometimes, members of a development team may reside on different continents, and Git seamlessly supports this geographic separation.

The Number of Macs in Development Shops is growing

The PC – most likely running Windows – continues to be widely used at software engineering companies. However, the number of Macs is increasing over time. This is especially true at shops building mobile apps for the iOS and Android platforms. Dumb terminals and punch cards remain the ancient artifacts of the early days of computer programming.

What about Issue and Bug Tracking?

According to InfoWorld, Jira is the leading tool when it comes to software project management, as well as functionality to provide issue and bug tracking. Its easy integration with a variety of other applications, especially source control software, is a major reason for its popularity. Considering Jira’s age, other applications, like Basecamp and Open Project, are growing in usage.

The Engine that powers DevOps

As DevOps emerges as a software industry standard, tools to manage the entire process, especially continuous delivery, are becoming more important. InfoWorld considers Jenkins to be the “engine that powers DevOps.” A free and open source application, Jenkins automates many aspects of DevOps, including builds, tests, and deployment.

Like Jira, the fact it integrates so well with other applications remains one of the reasons for its popularity. The price doesn’t hurt either! Travis-CI and Bamboo are two other continuous deployment tools worthy of note.

The Latest Trends in Software Development

InfoWorld also identified three emerging trends in software engineering, and they are all areas we’ve talked about on the Blog. Container tools – most notably Docker – have essentially become a best practice for modern software development. ChatOps is another one, letting teams use a chat interface to communicate with coworkers while also performing builds, tests, and deployments.

Machine Learning is their third trend, reflecting the growing importance of AI to help analyze massive datasets, among other relevant uses. How does your own team stack up against InfoWorld’s proverbial modern software development organization?

Stay tuned to the Betica Blog for additional insights from an ever-changing software development world.

News from the World of Software Development – October 2017

Welcome to this month’s edition of our news digest here at the Betica Blog. With the year end rapidly approaching, your organization needs to burn the midnight oil to achieve its annual goals. Hopefully these interesting stories from the software engineering world inspire your own efforts.

If you interested in checking out last month’s digest, simply click on the following link.

Innovative Continuous Delivery relies on Automation and AI

As many software organizations now leverage Agile and DevOps with an eye towards achieving the Holy Grail of continuous delivery, automation is playing a larger role. One example of the growing importance of automated software delivery is the $20 million in venture capital awarded to Harness, a company hoping to make enterprise-level CD available to businesses of all sizes. News about the Harness VC appeared earlier this month in SiliconANGLE.

Reaching continuous software delivery is a challenge for the largest companies in the industry, so naturally it’s even more difficult to implement at a small to medium sized business. The smaller firms able to meet this goal end up relying on manual interaction to fix any problems and errors within the process. Harness hopes to change all that, and are led by an executive team filled with industry veterans with experience in DevOps and state of the art software development technology.

Harness CEO, Jyoti Bansal, formerly led AppDynamics, known for their app monitoring software. He commented on what Harness brings to the CD table.

“At AppDynamics, our customers were happily using our platform to monitor their complex software applications, but almost all of them told me that the process for delivering rapid changes to those applications remained a huge problem. Software engineering teams need a platform that’s intuitive and powered by modern AI to meet demand for incredibly fast, high-quality releases,” said Bansal.

The Harness solution leverages AI and machine learning to provide automated monitoring of the software delivery process. It learns about an application and becomes able to initiate rollbacks when detecting irregular behavior. This allows for continuous updates without the worries of downtime. If interested, Harness is offering free trials of its application at the following link.

Quality Management Software Market Grows

Organizations in a variety of industries rely on quality management software (QMS) to ensure consistency in what they produce, be it software, consumer products, or even manufactured goods. This need is leading to a rapid growth in the market for this type of application, which is now projected to grow to $24 billion by 2022. News about this growth appeared this month in the Nasdaq GlobeNewswire.

Some of the major drivers of this growth include increased usage of quality management software at small and medium sized businesses, greater need for QMS in the automotive industry, and the emerging Cloud-based business sector. North America is predicted to be the leading region for QMS usage over the next five years, but the rest of the world is also contributing to the overall market expansion.

Forward-thinking software companies need to consider entering the lucrative QMS market to take advantage of these newfound opportunities.

Stay tuned to the Betica Blog for additional news and insights from the growing software development industry. As always, thanks for reading!

Is there already a Backlash against DevOps?

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Like any newer software development methodology, DevOps obviously has many proponentsy proponents, but at the same time others feel antipathy towards the practice. Similar reactions have happened in the past; for example, with Agile, as well as even older methodologies, like the Waterfall. Software engineers tend to be a passionate group, and it is not surprising that a measure of dissension arises once anything reaches a certain level of popularity.

Here is a closer look at some of the rationale behind a DevOps backlash. If your organization already uses it or is considering the transformation of its own software development process to follow its principles, read on for useful insights.

A Major Reason Developers are threatened by DevOps

A recent article by the DevOps development shop, Fixate, looked at why some developers hold a grudge against the methodology. One major reason is many software engineers are used to handling full-stack development – everything from the database design to the middleware to the user interface. They are even able to deploy the completed application into production.

DevOps divides many of these responsibilities among a collaborative team while also leveraging automated tools to increase the efficiency of the software development process. Organizations are trying to thrive in an increasingly competitive business landscape, and this fact remains the biggest driver of the adoption of DevOps. Intra-team interaction and speed are the keys, not necessarily the venerable lone cowboy programmer who’s a jack of all trades.

Modern companies using DevOps want technology professionals that are experts in a specific area and are able to work well on a team. This makes full-stack developers feel threatened about the future of their careers, so they lash out at DevOps. The concerns of the business generally carry more weight when it comes to a choice of methodologies.

Is DevOps a Poor Fit for the Enterprise?

Fixate also notes the difficulty in successfully adopting DevOps at larger enterprises that already have their own well-defined software development processes. Still, as the practice matures, many larger organizations are successfully transforming to take advantage of the new methodology. Expect this rationale to lessen over time as DevOps continues to evolve, and the tools that support the process add more useful functionality, especially containers and process automation.

Steps to combat a DevOps Backlash

With DevOps rapidly becoming an industry standard, any naysayers, especially individual developers, will likely have their voices drowned out. Larger enterprises still wary of the practice need to consider their ability to survive in a marketplace where the competition is taking advantage of DevOps in larger numbers. Fixate feels that fans of the practice should continue to advocate its advantages while keeping an open mind towards those who may feel differently.

Ultimately, there is no denying that DevOps is almost an industry standard. At the minimum, companies of all sizes need to explore following at least some of its practices in addition to taking advantage of related tools to make its own software development process work better. Remember, your competition is probably doing the same thing.

Stay tuned to the Betica Blog for additional dispatches from the always evolving software development world. Thanks for reading!