There’s a lot of automation that can happen that isn’t a replacement of humans but of mind-numbing behavior
Skilled workers historically have been ambivalent toward automation, knowing that the bodies it would augment or replace were the occasion for both their pain and their power
With the ascent of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) in particular, the whole world seems to be taking a stand on automation. Books about automation abound; talks on the benefits and harms of automation are aplenty. I proffer that the question of network automation is far simpler than the discussion at large, though I believe it does reflect a little of the tension in that larger discussion—the tension that Shoshana Zuboff alludes to. The view of network automation I’m discussing in this chapter is more of the Stewart Butterfield’s kind, the freeing of network administrators’ time and minds from dull, repetitive work.
This chapter aims to demystify network automation. As I’ve said before, a central concept that distinguishes cloud-native data center networks from their older generation counterparts is the focus on efficient operations. Network automation is a key enabler of that goal. To that end, this chapter addresses questions such as:
What is network automation and why should I care?
Do I need to learn programming to learn network automation?
Why is network automation hard?
How can I try out automation ...