Ode to the Environment
Consistency is key, in everything. People come to rely on trains, because they come on time. Devs rely on the environment which they develop in, because its stability allows them to be productive. Changing or upgrading that environment can be the same as changing the train schedule. Sometimes people get where they’re going faster, but sometimes, the change makes their life miserable.
Environment upgrades can be just like that. Speed, security, features. Everybody likes those. The ugly side to upgrades is that they have a tendency to break things that are already working, may be incompatible with current code, and disrupt the work of the team. As a struggling sysadmin / developer, all I really want in life is to build a stable platform that I can build my app in.
Hence, the Ode to the Environment:
The Environment is the basis for my business. Without it, and it’s consistency, there is uncertainty, chaos, and ultimately, failure.
I need to be able to replicate the Environment quickly, identify when issues are caused by it, sandbox it, and be comfortable building it from scratch, if it comes to that. (Hopefully, it never does.)
I need to be confident in the set of packages I’ve come to love, loathe, and rely on, and make sure they work for my business’s app.
I know that the Environment’s well-being will affect my application’s uptime, developers relying on it, and my business’s reputation.
I need to know the flaws and shortcomings in the Environment, and weigh how to fix them against the cost of change.
When it comes time to upgrade the Environment, there will be damn good reason. I need to be horribly convinced that my business will see benefits immediately.
Once I upgrade the Environment, I need to love and loathe it same as the old, embrace whatever change it brings, advocate for it and fix whatever issues the change brings.
Above all, I will maintain the best Environment that suits my business, and ensure that it is always meets the goals of my business, no matter the cost.