Archive for March 2010
Programming environments have come a long way from when I started in this business. I can recall loading programs from cassette tape into my Timex Sinclair computer in high school, and fumbling with the VAX editor in college. By the early 80′s, I found my self in graduate school with a mix of new (a microVAX) and old (a military surplus Raytheon 700, on which debugging amounted to reading hex codes from lights on the front panel and literally pressing the ‘step’ switch to move through the program).
Fast forward through the 90′s and into the new century, and things have changed quite a bit. Java programmers have Eclipse and other rich programming environments. If you work with the Microsoft technologies, Visual Studio has given you an increasingly powerful and convenient desktop over the past 15 years. Even database engineers have integrated environments where they can program and manage their database deployments. It seems that no matter what your role in the software business, there is a desktop tool for you. Which brings me to the topic of today’s post – the build engineer’s desktop.
It seems to me that the build engineer has drawn the short straw from software vendors. From this engineer we expect solutions to hard problems – complex compile and link sequences, deployments to test, staging and production environments, and a great deal of programming to make it all happen. But as a build engineer, your tool set is limited. You are expected to code, debug and deploy using a plain text editor, and cobble your scripts together ad hoc, with no centralized platform or desktop environment to act as your command center.
Enter OpenMake Meister. If you’re a build engineer, sitting down at the Meister client is like stepping into the cockpit of a 747. In one powerful desktop environment, you can assemble complex compile, link and archive services, manage deployments, do dependency analysis, create distributed workflows, write reusable scripts, and fully control the build, test and deploy services that your company demands of you.
I won’t go into all the details here, but build engineers, here’s a tip for you: stop scripting and start managing your build process. Take a look at OpenMake Meister, the build engineer’s desktop.