As someone who loves to prepare my meals every day, I have different styles of cooking. On leisurely days I make everything from scratch, paying utmost attention to cleaning, chopping, blending, and adding different quantities of seasoning and other condiments.
But on busy days, I rely on pre-cut vegetables and canned purees to prepare my meals in the shortest possible duration. I call it my instant meal. The instant meal does the job of filling my tummy just the same as my elaborate meals. The only thing it lacks is the choice factor.
Just like low code development to build a software system as opposed to traditional code development
More on traditional code development
To understand the difference between the two genres of code development, let us first try to list out the steps involved in traditional code development
Traditional code development begins with a set of developers analyzing the requirements, brainstorming a versatile detailed design, choosing the suitable programming language and the associated development stack (other development tools and databases), and formulating the test strategy.
This is a long process that involves hiring the developers, paying them by the hour spanning months’ worth of effort in exchange for a fully-customizable code solution.
What is low code development?
Low code is a visual approach to software development that does not expect the developers to know the syntaxes of programming languages. One can develop well-functioning apps merely by using the pre-coded function blocks that can be dragged and dropped on visual editors. These pre-configured function blocks can be reused to build applications on a plethora of use cases.
What are the advantages, you ask?
Apart from the very intuitive drag-drop feature that facilitates easy coding, other advantages of low code development include,
- Allows faster deployments to multiple platforms
- A single app can work for mobile, web, and cloud platforms
- Effortless maintenance and easier up-gradation of features
- Easier to create apps specific to the business needs
- Flexible costs dependent on the number of running instances of the framework
- Drives the culture of innovation
- Quicker time to market
Can we completely replace traditional code development with low code development?
Well, I’m afraid that’s not quite desirable. Low code development lags on the customization front. Since the function blocks are precoded, small changes/customizations are to be done in the pre-defined allowable boundaries of the blocks.
For businesses where the end goal is to be formulated on the go, low code development is not recommended. Traditional code development serves well for such scenarios since making changes and redesigning some parts is easier with it.
However, Gartner predicts that by 2024, low-code application development will be responsible for over 65% of application development activity.
When should businesses opt-in for low code development?
When businesses try to develop MVP for a certain concept or if they want to launch a beta version of their app, low code is an ideal choice. Low code allows businesses to be more agile. Some popular low code development platforms are Google app maker, Mendix, Microsoft PowerApps.
For applications at the production level, the traditional coding approach is still a better choice considering security and maintainability.