Diving Into Dev: The Software Development Life Cycle

DevOps and the SDLC

One word has recently redefined the software development life cycle.

Actually it's two words, a portmanteau of the words “development” and “operations.”

The word is “DevOps,” and it's been responsible for vast changes in the ways that people approach the software development life cycle.

For example, in the old days, the traditional method was to fully build a piece of software, and release it to a select number of users in a process known as “beta testing.”

The process was predictable – the build happened, the code happened, and there was a grand opening where the project went to beta – after beta, it went to public users.

The beta phase gave people an opportunity to test and debug software products – but now it's nearly as obsolete as the similarly named Betamax videocassette system!

The DevOps principal is all about blending and merging those traditional processes to make the software development life cycle more agile, to promote what's called continuous integration and continuous delivery and to automate and expedite and streamline parts of the software development life cycle to the benefit of teams and firms.

So in the case of beta testing, DevOps promotes the idea that testing is done throughout the process. It's not put into a single box in the workflow. It's done continuously, with continuous releases, and everything is merged together to make it meaner, leaner and more efficient.

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Written by Justin Stoltzfus
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Justin Stoltzfus is a freelance writer for various Web and print publications. His work has appeared in online magazines including Preservation Online, a project of the National Historic Trust, and many other venues.