Gartner predicts that by 2026, 80% of technology products will be created by people not categorized as technology professionals. The reasons for this have been discussed at length for some time now, and companies are now seeing the value in these tools as a way to accelerate development.
According to Jason Beres, SVP of developer tools at Infragistics, low code has significantly changed the way design and development teams work together, for the better.
Before things like WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editors, design teams and development teams worked in silos, with design teams working in tools like Sketch, Adobe XD or Figma and then handing their designs off to development teams to write the actual code in their IDE of choice, like Visual Studio or Visual Studio Code. Now, developers can use WYSIWYG tools to lay things out visually like a designer, while at the same time, including the design files from design teams, he explained.
Beres finds that using low code tools that bring together the typical deliverables of a design process, including visual design assets like artboards and prototypes, and automatically marrying those with the tools that developers use, instead of relying on the siloed designer-developer handoff, ensures applications will be delivered faster and with fewer bugs. He explained that the handoff can often be expensive, resulting in errors and producing inconsistent results.
“Everyone hopes that whatever is delivered by the development team after the UX design team completes its work looks pixel-perfect and behaves as expected, but nine times out of 10, it won’t. We lean too heavily on the developers to somehow become experts in new web frameworks and technologies that are new to them (or just new in general), including CSS, responsive web design, HTML layouts, and more, and be able to translate that design perfectly into what comes out as the end product,” said Beres.
With Gartner predicting that by 2026, 80% of applications will have been built by non-developers, how do developers feel about these tools? According to Beres, they’ve embraced them warmly, because they allow developers to eliminate mundane tasks that slow them down and are boring to do, as well as alleviate complex screen work like layout, screen design, and CSS.
“We are removing the complexity of responsive layout, theming, and branding because it’s all point and click and drag and drop in a WYSIWYG, driven by a design system and backed by rich UI components” he explained.
Beres believes that companies who don’t embrace these tools will be left behind, and that companies are recognizing that it is more cost-effective to use these low-code tools, and to skill-up existing and new developers instead of requiring them to handle all of the mundane, error-prone and repetitive tasks that typically take place in the software development process.
According to Beres, a lot of these repetitive tasks that can be replaced by low-code tooling include things where there are established patterns, such as data access.
“Today, tools can connect into back ends and can automate and generate tens to thousands of lines of code in seconds,” he said. “And that code is testable, editable, production ready. Developers no longer need to actually write this code, as the machine can do it faster and better, while at the same time not leaving the developer out of the process to modify or enhance the code. This sort of code-automation for modern web apps needs to include user interface code, more interaction code, and for real time and cost savings, should include the output from the UX design process. Humans don’t need to actually write every line of that code, because low-code tooling can do it for you.”
Here more from Jason Beres during our Low-Code/No-Code Developer Day, this Wednesday, April 13 at 10 AM ET. Register here.