Bryan Feuling is the author of Repeatability, Reliability, Scalability: Continuous Delivery and Continuous Deployment with GitOps, we got the chance to sit down with him and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.
Q: What is/are your specialist tech area(s)?
Bryan: DevOps, GitOps, CI/CD
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?
Bryan: A PM at Packt sent me a message on LinkedIn asking if I’d like to write a book about GitOps. I’ve seen a significant amount of vendor-specific books on GitOps, but none discussing the fundamental concepts and how to take those concepts to the highest level.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
Bryan: I’ve been doing research on GitOps for about a year on my own. Just before beginning the book, I spent a few weeks brushing up on specifics and researching for any other tools that might have come up recently.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
Bryan: Making sure that the content is useful and not dry or boring is a difficult task when writing a tech book. To overcome this I used an analogy to give real world examples of struggles and solutions which the reader can identify with. This made the writing fun for me as well.
Q: What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?
Bryan: I’ve found that many people have heard of the term GitOps and may have seen a short demo of a tool, but they don’t go into the underlying concepts of what GitOps is. This leads to poor adoption practices and can cause more pain than help. I think that the future of GitOps will be more focused on auto-generation and auto-remediation, as most tools don’t have those areas figured out.
Q. Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?
Bryan: Other books on the market are focused on a specific tool or tool set, which is very helpful for many. However, this book is unique because it isn’t focused solely on GitOps, but more around achieving repeatability, reliability, and scalability in delivery and deployment practices and how GitOps plays a role in that.
Q. What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away from the book with?
Bryan: Understanding and defining a process and desired outcomes should come before selecting a tool. Tools can be beneficial or detrimental, and the only way to avoid issues is to understand why the tool is even being considered.
Deployment and Delivery are two significantly different things with only a small area of overlap. It is important to know what needs to be solved or improved before adopting a process or solution.
GitOps is great, but it isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for every issue.
Don’t build a process around a tool. Define a process first, then use a tool that fits into the process.
Avoid the falling into the trap that open-source means “free” and vendor means “lock-in”. Vendor tools can be more freeing than open-source, and open-source tools can lead to significant lock-in. Evaluate both open-source and vendor solutions, but keep in mind the cost of licensing, hosting, operating, administrating, configuring, and updating. Vendor solutions will be weighted more to one side of those costs, and open-source solutions will be weighted more to the other side.
Q. What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?
Bryan: If you wan’t to learn anything, especially technology, I would highly recommend the Feynman Technique.
Q. Do you have a blog that readers can follow?
Q. Can you share any blogs, websites and forums to help readers gain a holistic view of the tech they are learning?
Bryan: https://medium.com/@bfeuling, https://www.gitops.tech/, https://harness.io/blog/devops/gitops-for-ci-cd-pipelines/, https://www.weave.works/technologies/gitops/
Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?
Bryan: It’s been great working with the team at Packt! They have all been encouraging and prompt with their response and help. I would highly recommend working with Packt for anyone who is looking to be an author.
Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?
Bryan: Not formally
Q. What are your favorite tech journals? How do you keep yourself up to date on tech?
Bryan: I usually wait until something new piques my interest and then I look for more information from the original author and also for pros/cons articles about the same topic
Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?
Bryan: I started by defining who the desired audience would be and what they are interested in. Then I crafted the outline of the book to start at a place where the majority of readers would be able to understand without being too boring or too technical. As the chapters moved on, I wanted to make sure that the reader was learning and also being entertained.
Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?
Bryan: You will hit a wall around half way through writing your book. Know that it will come and that you need to power through it!
You can find Bryan’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here