Infrastructure Is Software Too!
10 Pages Posted: 30 Oct 2015
Date Written: October 23, 2015
It is almost 30 years since Osterweil’s controversial but insightful observation that software processes could be considered as software too. In the current era of continuous delivery, DevOps, and the increasing proliferation of cyber-physical social systems in Cloud and Internet of Things (IoT) contexts, infrastructure definitions and implementation need to be constantly deployed and maintained. Thus, we argue that it is now beneficial to view infrastructure as software (IaS) too. Very few studies have empirically reported on this topic, and thus our objective in this paper is to investigate the impact of treating infrastructure as software, and the potential benefits that may arise. We adopted a mixed-method approach: beginning with an evaluative industry case study at a global financial organization which had recently transitioned to an IaS approach. We followed this with a large-scale sample survey which investigated the effects of infrastructure as software on an organization’s IT performance We identify the potential benefits of IaS and also identify some of the pitfalls and open questions on which further research is necessary.
Keywords: Continuous delivery, infrastructure as software, DevOps
JEL Classification: C42, D23, L86
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation