I think DevOps is very much a web-application thing (where web-application includes intranets, ... basically anything that speaks tcp). I seriously see the need there. I still remember the days when developers would build an application that worked on their system and then handed it off to Ops, hoping to never hear back from it. I interviewed developers that could not tell me which webserver or application server their company was running in production, even though capabilities and performance characteristics differ wildly. The DevOps role is trying to bridge the gap, it's the jack of all trades, that knows enough of every piece of the system to debug issues that happen at those boundaries. Is this DB problem a machine issue, do we just need new hardware? Is it an application problem (n+1 queries) and where could those be? How can I structure my stack in a way to hand of tasks to the place where they can be solved efficiently. The implementation of those solutions can be handled by domain experts, but someone needs to keep all those pieces from breaking apart at the seams. In the web world, that's the DevOps.