reach your next-level DevOps Career

I often get questions about how to get into development or how to progress in a dev/webdev/devops career.  Here’s my most recent “From Dev to DevOps” ideas:

– become very familiar with doing container-centric development.  At the moment “Docker Compose” will get you comfortable with the terminology and mechanics of containers.  It’s extremely useful for local dev work. It’s also very similar to Docker Cloud, and leads pretty directly to Kubernetes and Amazon EC2 Container Service (ECS).

– learn one or more orchestration softwares.  Chef is the biggest, Puppet is cool, Salt Stack is the new hotness.  My favorite is Ansible: it’s human-readable, flexible, fast, and obvious.  The other day I wrote a “create or update a distributed S3 bucket, and verify it has the correct permissions” in 7 lines of code!

– Amazon AWS is a pain in the ass to learn. However, there are tons of really excellent talks, so you can teach yourself quite a bit. You don’t have to do Amazon, but it’s what 95% of the startups use.

– Invest in O’reilly Safari Online ($40/month?) to read all their books and watch all their videos.  I’ll post my favorites in another article. Start with “Agile Testing” and “Continuous Delivery.”

– DevOps can really accelerate development by creating and maintaining a strong Continuous Integration system and Testing culture in general.  Run don’t walk to read “Agile Testing” by Lisa Crispin. I steal her stuff for about half of my talks. (If you saw my “Python Testing” talk last year, there was a bit in there borrowed from the book).

– tell your current employer that your career is moving into DevOps (/ Amazon). They’re getting a good deal in you if you stay there and contribute, so they’ll start investing in you by sending you to conferences and/or training you up.

– Run don’t walk to go to all Meetups you’re even vaguely interested in.  I do Unix Users Group (UUASC, heavy servers) and LA DevOps (these are listed on the sidebar.) My favorite is the Socal Python group. It’s super friendly and wide-ranging.

– enjoy the ride!