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Kill It with Fire: Manage Aging Computer Systems (and Future Proof Modern Ones) (Paperback)
Kill It with Fire chronicles the challenges of dealing with aging computer systems, along with sound modernization strategies.
How to survive a legacy apocalypse
“Kill it with fire,” the typical first reaction to a legacy system falling into obsolescence, is a knee-jerk approach that often burns through tons of money and time only to result in a less efficient solution. This book offers a far more forgiving modernization framework, laying out smart value-add strategies and proven techniques that work equally well for ancient systems and brand-new ones.
Renowned for restoring some of the world’s oldest, messiest computer networks to operational excellence, software engineering expert Marianne Bellotti distills key lessons and insights from her experience into practical, research-backed guidance to help you determine when and how to modernize. With witty, engaging prose, Bellotti explains why new doesn’t always mean better, weaving in illuminating case studies and anecdotes from her work in the field.
Where to focus your maintenance efforts for maximum impact and value
How to pick the right modernization solutions for your specific needs and keep your plans on track
How to assess whether your migrations will add value before you invest in them
What to consider before moving data to the cloud
How to determine when a project is finished
Packed with resources, exercises, and flexible frameworks for organizations of all ages and sizes, Kill It with Fire will give you a vested interest in your technology’s future.
About the Author
Marianne Bellotti has worked as a software engineer for over 15 years. She built data infrastructure for the United Nations to help humanitarian organizations share crisis data worldwide and tackled some of the oldest and most complicated computer systems in the world as part of United States Digital Service. At Auth0 she ran Platform Services, a portfolio that included shared services, untrusted code execution, and developer tools. Currently she runs Identity and Access Control at Rebellion Defense. She can be found on most social networks under the handle bellmar.
"A valuable addition to the literature on the topic, particularly for managers and senior contributors . . . Kill it With Fire is a useful and highly readable guide to solving these problems by leveraging the organization—the system around the system." —Laura Nolan, USENIX
"Modernizing legacy systems is an increasingly common task for software developers. Kill It with Fire guides you through the ins and outs of these endeavors in an engaging way, diving into both the technical and social aspects that are crucial to making you successful when undertaking modernization projects." –Damian Schenkelman, Principal Engineer, Auth0
"Kill It With Fire is incredibly well timed. For those alarmed by the provocative title, rest assured the only thing Bellotti advocates torching is the notion of torching itself. And while the book is written for technical leadership, her wisdom is something many nontechnical government leaders need to hear right now, lest they fall prey to the gaggle of advisers saying things like 'we just need to get them off the mainframe.' . . . Bellotti’s book could not have come at a better time, and while there are other factors in this equation, she outlines some of the most important." —Jennifer Pahlka, OneZero
"When it comes to the right processes and thought patterns for successfully dealing with legacy systems, Bellotti's remarks are worth their weight in gold." —Peter Schmitz, Heise Media
"A most excellent book for both engineers and managers alike." —Michael Simons, @rotnroll666
"I am RIDICULOUSLY EXCITED to read this book!" —Katie Sylor-Miller, @ksylor