Atlassian Expands DevOps Tools Portfolio to Improve Collaboration

Atlassian has added an extensible catalog for tracking software components, dubbed Compass, to its portfolio of DevOps tools along with an Atlassian Data Lake and Atlassian Analytics cloud service that makes it simpler to aggregate and query data collected from the company’s portfolio of tools.

In addition, Atlassian is making its Atlas collaboration framework—formerly known as Team Central—formally available in beta. That framework, in effect, provides an overlay through which different collaboration tools teams adopted by various DevOps can be more easily integrated.

Compass provides DevOps teams with the ability to map all the components they use to assemble their software as well as the teams that own them. DevOps teams can access shared components and documentation along with scorecards to allow them to measure and evaluate their architecture based on the baselines, security or compliance requirements they might be required to meet. It can be extended to other applications via an integrated Apps engine using Forge, the existing Atlassian cloud development environment.

Tiffany To, head of product for Agile and DevOps at Atlassian, said Compass is designed for DevOps teams that are typically trying to manage 50 or more microservices. It is designed to be alongside the Jira project management software that is widely used by software development teams to manage multiple projects.

Atlassian Analytics, meanwhile, is based on a visualization and analytics platform the company gained last year with the acquisition of Chartio. Initially, the Atlassian Data Lake will include data from Jira Software and Jira Service Management tools with support for additional planned Atlassian platforms.

Collectively, these tools are part of an ongoing Atlassian effort to make it simpler to integrate multiple DevOps teams, said To. Many of those teams prefer to maintain autonomy over the tools they select. The challenge that creates organizations need some type of overlay through which they can and share best practices, she said.

A survey of 2,000 developers conducted by Atlassian found half of the respondents exercise strong autonomy over the tools they use, with more control over tool selection gained as developers become more experienced. The same survey also found that 65% of developers felt they should be responsible for more of the software product life cycle than they currently are.

It’s apparent that most organizations building software are trying to strike a balance between developer autonomy and centralized control. Developers are expensive to hire and retain, so there is a natural tendency to make available the tools they prefer. That, however, can lead to a level of tool sprawl that makes it difficult to determine the overall state of application development and deployment within an organization.

Regardless of the approach, the need to remove as much friction as possible from DevOps workflows is clear, especially as the number of simultaneous application development projects continues to multiply. The challenge and the opportunity, of course, is achieving that goal while keeping developers happy.

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