Ansible vs Terraform

Tech Thoughts: Are You Thinking in Code?

In today’s edition of Tech Thoughts, EMEA Chief Technology Officer Gary Harrison shares his thoughts on the re-emergence of Infrastructure-as-Code as a catalyst for digital transformation.

 

I’ve been quite intrigued lately (and even a little excited) at the resurgence in Infrastructure-as-Code (IaC) as a model for driving digital transformation and automation efficiencies in organisations.  The concept has been around for a while now, though adoption has been fragmented at best. As we work closely with our customers at Metsi I’ve been trying to understand why this might be the case. 

I think the rationale lies in the fact that Infrastructure-as-Code works best in a declarative model – defining the target state you want the infrastructure to attain and allowing the underlying automation technology to achieve that state. This is in contrast to a procedural model where we directly code how to attain the target state (by programming a set of deployment instructions). 

The real shift is in the culture of organisations now recognising that a declarative approach scales better and is significantly more manageable (creates less technical debt). Perhaps it has been a result of enterprises struggling with multiple silos of automation technologies, across different teams, without a solution to effectively integrate them. What was meant to be the great creator of infrastructure agility – “automation” – is actually starting to stifle innovation and hinder an organisation’s ability to scale as their application landscape rapidly grows. Is it this appetite for thinking about a new approach to infrastructure automation that is driving this resurgence in IaC? 

This is all a good thing too!  With Metsi’s focus clearly on digital maturity for our customers, and a framework for end-to-end automation across the enterprise, we are quietly chuffed at the amazing IaC solutions we have been building for our customers recently.  The engineer inside us all is excited for the times ahead! 

Tech Thoughts is a bi-monthly (if all the stars are aligned, no promises) blog series in which seasoned CTO Gary Harrison pulls from over 25 years of tech industry experience to share his thoughts, insights and speculations on various topics in information technology.

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