Software is Eating the Ops World

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One thing I’ve thought a lot about is how the role of the system administrator is changing. This reflection was prompted by a couple of things: one, I’m a co-chair for talks at one of the longest running system administration conferences, so I should probably think about this kind of thing seriously when planning what talks we’ll accept, etc. The other thing, though, is that I’ve read what some peers have had to say about the tone of the Google Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) book. My own interpretation is that the book thinks of traditional system administrators as “button pushers” who solely operate something that someone else gave them; similar to what you see in many large organization IT departments. There’s a heavy emphasis on Engineering™, which isn’t present in large organization IT departments. I haven’t really dug in to the book — so I’m going to leave those thoughts here and circle back in a few.

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