All aboard the ChatOps train

Atlassian’s Stride gives access of its API to all developers

Eirini-Eleni Papadopoulou
© Shutterstock / Tang Yan Song

As ChatOps becomes more and more relevant in the DevOps ecosystem, Stride, Slack’s competitor opens its API to all developers in hope of giving the ultimate freedom for app customization.

According to Atlassian, since its initial release in September 2017, Stride has attracted the interest of tens of thousands of working teams which embedded the app in their daily communications. However, this is not nearly close to the number of users of its competitor, Slack.

Nonetheless, Stride is taking the big step by opening its API to all developers, promising the ultimate customization level for your ChatOps environment.

Since I bet there are some of you out there that are still wondering what ChatOps is, let’s first have a quick look at it, before getting into more details about the Stride news!

There’s never too much talking!

ChatOps, as a term, owes its conception widely to the GitHub community. Its main objective is to bring conversation-driven development and automation in the daily operations. True to DevOps core value of CAMS (Culture, Automation, Measurement, and Sharing), ChatOps aims to do a team’s heavy-lifting by automating everyday tasks and making collaboration faster and cheaper.

SEE ALSO: Collaboration or survival of the fittest: Who runs the DevOps world?

It was initially presented by Damon Edwards and John Willis at DevOpsDays Mountainview 2010 and it has been increasingly gaining popularity in the DevOps ecosystem since 2014.

“Placing tools directly in the middle of the conversation”

Jesse Newland, GitHub

The main components in ChatOps are:

  • Collaboration tool – the chat client
  • Bot – the essence of ChatOps; the bot is what comes between the collaboration tool and the Devops tools
  • System integration – DevOps tools

If you are interested in getting started or having a closer look at ChatOps, you can easily find several guides and tutorials online.

But for now, let’s go back to our big news.

Your way is the better way!

Atlassian aims to provide Stride users with a high level of flexibility to customize and personalize their environment. As the official announcement suggests, every team is different and has different needs that should be automated in order to create the best ChatOps environment possible. This is exactly what Stride’s open API does.

SEE ALSO: Automating DevOps – The technology missing link

Let’s have a look at the advantages of the open-access Stride’s API:

  • From side to side – apps are able to surface real-time information without pushing updates into a chat conversation, just by using the Stride sidebar.
  • It’s all in your hands – developers have now a huge amount of control over Stride’s API and can build custom content that Stride renders in iframes via a Javascript API.
  • Actions and decisions – arguably a very unique feature of Stride. Now you can “automate simple tasks to a teammate when an external service heats up or close the loop on roadmap prioritization debates that take place in other tools”.
  • Ask the natives – and those would be the bots; simply install them in a conversation with a “@mention”.

Will those new possibilities make Stride the better team communication platform? It remains to be seen…

Eirini-Eleni Papadopoulou
Eirini-Eleni Papadopoulou was the editor for Coming from an academic background in East Asian Studies, she decided that it was time to go back to her high-school hobby that was computer science and she dived into the development world. Other hobbies include esports and League of Legends, although she never managed to escape elo hell (yet), and she is a guest writer/analyst for competitive LoL at TGH.

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