What is low-code?
Low-code development employs visual, model-driven techniques that enable a broad range of people to collaborate and build custom applications without code. Traditional waterfall development requires many people with specialized skills, and can take six months to a year to deliver a finished app. With low-code development platforms, the business and development team can collaborate in real-time to build apps in less than a week.
Components of a low-code platform
CI with low-code encourages developers to share their code and unit tests by merging their changes into a shared version control repository after completing a task. Committing code triggers an automated build system to grab the latest code from the shared repository and to build, test, and validate the full master branch (also known as the trunk or main).
Rome wasn’t built in a day, but your app could be
Don’t Repeat Yourself (DRY) that states, “Every piece of knowledge must have a single, unambiguous, authoritative representation within a system” and helps developers to maintain the structure of their applications from being messed up and frustrating when debugging the applications.
Omni-channel App Development
Build one code base for all devices
Rather than support independent code and tooling for each incompatible target, developers are looking for ways to unify development activities and serve many targets from a single, modular code base.
Openness and Extensibility
Fast integrations, complete control
Seamlessly integrate with other applications and cloud services through APIs and third-party security and application lifecycle services. Model API and Platform SDK.
Go fast without worrying about risk
Built-in automated testing, proactive quality monitoring, and real-time performance management.
Smart and Connected
Low-code platforms provide out-of-the-box connectors to simplify integrating with third-party databases or applications, handling complex XML messages, or leveraging IoT and cognitive services.
Deploy to the cloud of your choice with just one click
Manage applications in the cloud, through a reliable cloud framework get higher resilience and scalability. While at the same time reducing total cost and effort for running and maintaining the application.
What can you create with a low-code platform?
Rapidly experiment with new initiatives, leverage emerging technologies like IoT, AI and Machine learning to unlock new sources of value. Low-code platforms allow you to take a test-and-learn approach to innovation, exploring new ideas quickly and at low cost. Business users can create functional prototypes and collaborate seamlessly with development teams to extend apps with complex logic and integrations, allowing the organization to iterate toward optimal outcomes and quickly scale once ideas are proven.
Build applications that enable customers and partners to better interact and/or transact with your business, improving satisfaction, retention, and revenue. Recognizing that many enterprises lack sufficient UX resources, many low-code platforms include an integrated UI framework with out-of-the-box widgets and building blocks that make it easy for individuals without UX backgrounds to create highly usable, multi-channel apps.
Create employee or partner facing applications designed to lower costs by reducing or automating manual or paper-based processes. Easily integrate your applications with core systems and take advantage of out-of-the-box connectors that many low-code platforms provide.
Use a low-code platform to easily replace legacy systems with a user-first approach, ensuring the right functionality and user experience. Be confident that you won’t create tomorrow’s legacy with platforms that support modern, microservices architectures, and include built in capabilities for addressing quality and maintainability at each stage of the lifecycle.
Businesses are using low-code platforms to turn their app strategy into a reality
Build apps that keep up with customer needs.
Streamline processes to innovate faster.
Create apps without breaking budget.
Mendix’s low-code platform brings app development into the future
Empower a continuum of developers
The Desktop Modeler enables professional developers to balance higher productivity with control, while the WYSIWYG Web Modeler enables citizen developers to rapidly build functional prototypes.
Promote iterative development
With agile project management capabilities and a built-in feedback loop, Mendix promotes rapid, iterative development in collaboration with the business.
Create smart experiences
Mendix enables developers to incorporate technologies like IoT, AI, and blockchain into their apps, without needing specialized skills.
Deploy web-scale applications
Through its support of Cloud Foundry, Docker, and Kubernetes, Mendix offers unrivaled deployment flexibility across public, private, and virtual private clouds, or on-premises.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Low-Code and Agile Development?
- Low-code development platforms like Mendix adapt well to the Agile methodology, by providing collaboration tools conductive to consecutive rapid sprints. With Mendix’s Sprintr feature, project management, debugging and feedback loops couldn’t be more intuitive.
- Best Low-Code Tools?
- The best low-code platforms offer an array of tools to facilitate the application development process. A great platform offers tools for project management, feedback, and debugging and should also offer drag-and-drop functionality, customizable UI and UX, intuitive workflows and logic, and more.
- Low-Code vs No Code?
- While both make it easy to produce applications, rapidly at scale, low-code platforms are often offer advanced functionality through some basic coding. Whereas no-code platforms require no knowledge of coding at all, but often do not offer advanced functionality. Mendix is a hybrid platform, allowing for a full no-code visual experience, but with the option for advanced functionality by utilizing additional code.
- What is the Low-Code Application Development Process?
- Developing an application with low-code is generally the same as normal agile software development. There is still a planning stage, and teams work in agile sprints to build out functionality and incorporate feedback in an iterative manner after each deployment. The difference is that with a low-code platform, the speed of which apps can be developed is often much greater and more efficient.
- Best Low-Code Platform?
- While there are several frontrunners in the low-code development platform space, Mendix is a recognized leader by both Gartner and Forrester. Mendix is the only hybrid application development platform that is both a no-code and low-code platform. Mendix’s extensive collaboration tools also makes the platform stand out.
- Low-Code and Digital Transformation?
- Digital transformation for many organizations is a long and arduous process. By adopting a low-code platform, companies can greatly increase the speed at which they can develop software, while ensuring all stake holders have an avenue for input and feedback. There are no limitations with low-code. Organizations have used Mendix to upgrade legacy systems, build IoT enabled smart apps, and leverage AI to make processes more efficient. Visit our app gallery to learn more.
- What is visual development/how does it work?
- To minimize hand-coding, low-code platforms must offer easier, more intuitive ways to build apps. For instance, a model-driven development (MDD) approach uses visual models for defining an application’s data models, business logic, user interfaces, etc. Such approaches empower a range of users—from professional developers to citizen developers—to visually model full-stack web and mobile applications. On average, our customers realize 10x productivity over traditional approaches. As their capability matures, (through more skilled developers, better processes around agile and DevOps, more reusable IP, etc.) some have seen up to 20 times productivity.
- How does low-code development compare to terms like high-productivity aPaaS and RAD?
- High-productivity aPaaS (hpaPaaS) is a term popularized by Gartner. The analyst firm defines high productivity aPaaS as a platform that supports declarative, model-driven design and one-step deployment. hpaPaaS provides rapid application development (RAD) features for development, deployment, and execution — in the cloud. When you get down to it, high-productivity aPaaS and low-code development both describe platforms that abstract away from code and offer an integrated setof tools to accelerate app delivery. Rapid application development (RAD) meanwhile is defined by SearchSoftwareQuality as a “concept that products can be developed faster and of higher quality through: Gathering requirements using workshops or focus groups; prototyping and early, reiterative user testing of designs; the re-use of software components” and more. With that in mind, low-code development platforms facilitate the practical implementation of RAD. Visual development capabilities enable rapid, iterative and collaborative design; frequent sharing of prototypes to gather user feedback and refine requirements; and reuse of apps and components through an app store. Thus, the two terms are very much aligned.
- How to build an app without code?
- Instead of worrying about what kinds of databases to pick, what kind of coding language to build your app in or what kind of UI/UX components to use, all of it is abstracted when using a low-code platform. The platform allows for anyone – from expert developers to business consultants with no coding background – to build applications. With low-code, you can focus on building pages with templates, create business logic with visual microflows, and deploy with just one click.