It’s that time of the year again, Valka’s going into hibernation. So that meant detailing time. Two passes of washes, a coat of Blacklight polish, and finally Jet Seal so she’s ready for the next winter.

I’ve been reading a lot about DevOps lately, and it came to me that there are actually some parallels when it comes to car detailing and running an IT operation:

  • In working with the whole car, you want to divide and conquer, panel by panel. You plan ahead, visualizing all the work needed, you want small, workable sections. You want to work lean and agile so you don’t tire yourself out. You can make sure one panel is as good and scratch-free as it gets before moving to the next, and quickly spot missed sections. So quality at the source and less rework, optimizing the process.
  • Then there’s the steps in washing. Start with the wheels, then top to bottom and constantly rinsing out the mitts and fresh soap with two buckets making sure you don’t end up with dirt again on already clean sections. Likewise making sure there are no scratches before you apply wax. Don’t want defects affecting downstream processes.
  • And the whole thing about washing and maintaining is about keeping dust off. You don’t want dust to accumulate, resulting in more wash passes to get right, or even worse, scratches which becomes expensive to fix: more polishing time or if the damage is severe enough, coat failure resulting in repainting ($$). Concept of technical debt applies here, valuing a proper approach (wash frequently) versus a costlier fix later (letting the dust do damage).

Maybe the only thing missing here is I don’t have a DA (read: no plug for a DA) to automate as much as possible... heh.