This weekend’s interesting link is to a post by Jeremy Schulman, formerly Director of Network Automation with Juniper Networks, but now the founder of Schprokits, a startup which aims to generate automation framework tools for network professionals that are of a similar standard to those achieved in the DevOps community. Though Schprokits is operating in stealth mode currently, Jeremy is publishing blog posts relating to his mission.
I first met Jeremy at Networking Field Day 4, then saw him again at Networking Field Day 5, each time presenting Juniper automation solutions to us. I’ve stayed in touch with Jeremy since then and he has offered many wise words and honest guidance to me with regard to automation. Thus I find the conversations I have with him invigorating, and while he willingly shares his insights and vision for the future of NetOps, he is also a good listener and willing to consider with humility any contrary positions, different ideas, or any other feedback. That’s pretty cool, all things considered.
And so, the link.
In his post How To Start Navigating Change, Jeremy shares some of what he has learned about managing change in a NetOps environment. If you’ve dabbled in NetOps, I wonder if any of this sounds familiar:
I know many exceptionally intelligent people in NetOps. They have the mental acuity to be great programmers – if given the proper environment. They might even be personally motivated to write code to automate the network. But does their environment allow for it? Perhaps they lack the structured training to learn good coding skills. Perhaps they don’t have an environment to develop and test on. Perhaps even if they developed and thoroughly tested the code, their management would not allow it to be used in production because they are not “proper software engineers.” Or maybe they are just too swamped with real networking work to invest the time.
Go take a read of his blog, and you’ll also get an insight into where Schprokits may fit in going forward. It’s good stuff.