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Research for Practice: The DevOps Phenomenon

By Anna Wiedemann, Nicole Forsgren, Manuel Wiesche, Heiko Gewald, Helmut Krcmar

Communications of the ACM, Vol. 62 No. 8, Pages 44-49

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A traditional software company releases its flagship product maybe every few years. Each release can include hundreds of new features and improvements. Because releases are infrequent, users can grow impatient waiting for each new release and are thankful when it finally arrives.

Disappointment sets in, however, when bugs are found and features don't work as expected. Under great stress and with great turmoil, an emergency release is produced and put into production (hurried through the regular release process, often achieved by skipping tests), which has still more bugs, and the process repeats with more emergency releases, leading to more frustration, stress, and disappointment. Worse yet, new business opportunities are missed or ignored because of doubt, uncertainty, and distrust in the IT department's ability to deliver value.


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