A couple of days back, I was dropping my daughter of at her college and she asked me what sounded like a fairly simple question. “Do you like driving?”
The short answer was yes, but (and there is always is a but), “it depends”. Am I driving in start-stop traffic or just cruising along the highway? The former is a stressed-filled, hazardous journey, the latter a pleasant dream (considering I live in the SF Bay Area).
In a time where we are moving to an Autonomous world, cars, planes, databases, drones,… what does that mean for the role of the humble System Administrator? I don’t have all the answers but I know for sure, “it depends”. Traditionally SysAdmins, made sure the IT Infrastructure was up and running, with no down-time and was secure. They managed the Servers, configuration, operations, and maintenance of all systems. Now with the advent of the cloud and DevOps there is a paradigm shift. A similar story for DBAs with the advent of the Autonomous Database. Do we all pack up and go home? Of course not, as with life our roles continue to evolve.
For yours truly, I have had three distinct careers, Engineering, Product Marketing, and Community Management. Even with the latter as a Community Manager my role in each organization I have been with has been totally different. You may no longer have to add, install and configure a bare-metal server, as the Cloud takes care of that, but you will need to understand DevOps and how many of the open-source tools work in the cloud.
You will have to understand the complete software development lifecycle, and know what to automate in the continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipeline. You will have to know how containers work and ensure through continuous monitoring that all critical applications and infrastructure are running 24 by 7.
Within reason, if a suit no longer fits, you don’t have to throw it away and can have it adjusted, so it is with the evolving IT landscape and your career. Whether you are a SysAdmin or DBA, the autonomous world offers so much to offload you of the mundane so you can focus on the more value-add exciting tasks. To learn more about DevOps, check out the Oracle DevOps Technology page.