In an earlier post, I outlined why I think that there is value in enterprise developer specialization. I concluded that there are four emerging classes of developers: User Facing, Mobile, Business Logic and Data, and Operations.
In the past, operations was a separate role and often team working outside the development team. The DevOps movement led many developers to acquire operations skills and move that work back into the development cycle. When this amounted to a build-migrate-deploy cycle, it was reasonable for full-stack developers to do this work. Now, the operations landscape is sufficiently complex that a skill class has emerged. Operations Developers (and yes, they are developers) concern themselves with deployment scripts, infrastructure automation and cloud technologies. They do not maintain build scripts or Continuous Integration implementations; those are the domain of the other developer classes. Instead, they provide “infrastructure as a service” (IaaS) to the other developers and concern themselves with secure and stable scaling of that infrastructure. Puppet, Chef, AWS, Azure, OpenStack and Docker are some of the relevant technologies.