blue and brown concrete stairs

Continuous integration hits 30 years, though some still ignore it

It still puzzles me how is it possible that an 1991 idea, is still ignored by some software engineering teams worldwide in their advent to “deliver” at any cost, fail to invest the adequate time into ensuring they have all the pipelines in order. Don’t know if to attribute that to bad management or complacency inside the entire team.

Sadly to say, I’ve had my share of this situation. Though on the projects under my team’s ownership, we’ve been all the rage with tests, code quality metrics and documentation published directly from the source code, not the same I can say for the other half and for the artifacts produced in the last years of work, which are hand built, locally on the developer’s laptop which is releasing the artifact.

One of the arguments I get when asked why doesn’t a CI pipeline exists, can be summarized with the great words of a very popular meme: “No time to explain! Grab a cactus!”. Basically, we’re too busy working to stop for a moment and find ways to make our work even easier, for example, by the power given through machines that are executing the mundane tasks of compiling, checking style, running tests and doing repetitive static code analysis to gauge the health of one’s code-base.

I won’t state again the advantages of the CI movement, as you have a ton of well-written, well-argued articles, just Google them. What I will say is simple: as a development team in 2021 around 30 years after the CI movement was invented, it’s kind of sad and you’re kinda loosing time and the employers money if you’re not letting the machines do the repetitive work of artifact building.

Furthermore, your employer is a bit of a fool for not sustaining the minimal amount integration automation. Though to be honest I would not blame the employer, but much more the team mentality which favors complacency and repetitive work instead of striving for the advantages that fast iteration, which translates to fast product development is brought on by the CI movement, where the human element is removed from the integration of code and delivery of artifacts, letting the humans to the more interesting work of developing your business basically.