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Right - and I guess the point is that the person who is working on features ends up also being that one person who does the automatic provisioning and testing pipeline administration work, as well.

This is honestly why I've gone with PaaS - mostly Heroku - for several months now when deploying a new application. Why on Earth developers do anything other than working on the core features of their program I don't know. All of the things you need to set up - tesing pipeline, and containerized, automatic deployment, load balancing, databases - are now available as cloud services. There is absolutely no need for the developer to be doing administration and provisioning tasks at this point.

If you think you need to set up your own server infrastructure ask yourself one question: is there any specific technical requirement that my application has that can't be fulfilled by existing cloud services? If there isn't, and there probably won't be, you shouldn't be doing ops yourself, especially not in a startup setting where time is absolutely at a premium and you need to be spending all of it on making the best product you can make.

And before everyone tells me that PaaS is more expensive - it's only more expensive if your time is worth nothing. But your time isn't worth nothing - it's probably worth over $100/hr if you are a developer working in the United States. So Heroku ends up not being more expensive at all - especially not before you have to scale.

Try convincing the ops at a large bank, insurance company or government that they can run their infrastructure in the public cloud, and watch as you get laughed out of the building.

I think it depends on your definition of infrastructure. Let me illustrate..

Core banking, batch processing, highly sensitive data stores? Probably not great candidates for public cloud consumption.

Web properties and services which don't rely on said functionality? Absolutely great candidates.

And the reality is, whether the IT guys like it or not, developers inside of these orgs are consuming cloud because getting a VM in a traditional sense takes forever (for good reason.)

As a result, we're seeing a shift in the industry where the idea of large corps / financial institutions / government are being pragmatic about the idea of a 'hybrid cloud.'

Banks are leery of the cloud for anything they do because even a basic web site can have sensitive (hackable) links to logins for account data. Healthcare companies have the same concerns around private health data.

I fully understand that, having worked in that world for the better part of the last decade.

The reality is, adoption of cloud in the enterprise is growing, not shrinking.

In Australia gov (state & Federal) is now "Cloud First".

Two, three years ago you'd be right. Rightly or wrongly more and more people are thinking differently about that. The CIA for instance.

If you're working on a startup that is not yet profitable (or at least compensating you for your time), your time is currently worth close to nothing. That same time may or may not have a higher value later.

That's only true if you have no money and have the means to live completely for free. Otherwise, if like most human beings you have some expenses, than regardless of whether your time is producing value it certainly has a cost, and that can be directly compared against the cost of a PaaS.

Your time is priceless to a startup - it can't afford to pay you your value and yet entirely depends on your output. The startup literally can't exist without you.

That depends though on the current value of the start up, which could very well be close to zero.

Say you could be paid $100 p/h at some other company, but instead your start up is paying you $5 p/h because that is all it can currently afford.

Say you can save yourself a weeks work by going with one hosting option that is twice as expensive but the total additional cost would allow you to work for $5 p/h for an additional two weeks then that isn't a great trade because the "value" of that labor is both unknown and irrelevant at this point. It might be $0 p/h or it might be $10000+ p/h.

1:1X dyno on Heroku is free, with a postgres server, and a free redis instance.

So even at $5/hr I can't justify doing this work myself at this point, since I can get the infrastructure for my minimum viable product going for free. I can and should spend my time focusing on developing the features.

+1 :)

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