As someone who has a basic understanding of computer programming, I often feel frustrated and confused when I try to interpret a large chunk of codes. My past coding experiences include an introduction to Python course, Swift, and SQL. One of the main reasons why I love studying technology is that it enables businesses to maximize efficiency, user experience, and mobility. However, not every business person has an IT background or is familiar with computer programming, so it creates a communication gap between them and their IT teams.
“With 88 percent of companies adopting low-code as a standard for developing applications and 74 percent of those companies planning to integrate business lines into the application development lifecycle, it is clear that companies are embracing this technology to relieve the pressure in application demand.”
Low code development platforms steer away from traditional computer programming methods and integrate a visual, model-based integration of technology into business functions. For example, when understanding an IF logic statement encoded within an application, the visual model directly translates the purpose and function behind the logic.
Applications are commonly developed to meet client needs, boost business productivity, and save money. By breaking down the programming logic behind complex applications in a way that both business and IT teams can understand not only saves time but also opens more doors for diverse and intuitive inputs.
Mendix is an example of a low-code software platform. Founded in 2005 in Rotterdam, Mendix was created to empower IT and Business teams to collaborate like never before, while experiencing unmatched speed and control. The platform incorporates agile project management, which allows for continuous planning, coding, deployment, integration, and testing. Agile is different from the traditional waterfall management style because the latter leaves more room for error and takes up more time while agile project management performs tasks in tandem and delivers more accurate results.
The visual modeling for Mendix’s low-code platform is implemented through its microflows feature, which is based on the standard business process modeling notation. This allows a straightforward interpretation of the business processes applied within the app development.
Another feature of the low-code platform is its reusability component, which allows users to access public and private app stores and download custom codes such as Google Maps into their applications. The reusability feature is also a short-cut to reuse existing models to build other app channels, optimizing the multi-channel user experience. Mendix leverage these services from Amazon Web Services Cloud (AWS) to eliminate the need for developers to learn how to incorporate new technologies such as IoT and AI.
Businesses are leaning towards low-code platforms to develop their complex applications because they can launch a minimum viable product (MVP) within months rather than the typical 3-5 year wait resulting from traditional methods. As a direct result of that, cutting down time equals cutting down cost, and faster delivery leads to faster feedbacks. For example, in 2004, a leading pension fund provider in the Netherlands named AZL chose the Mendix App Platform to develop a user-friendly portal for its pension participants. The company realized that their traditional business model can no longer meet their customers’ preferences, thus the Mendix app platform can reduce time-to-market for the new portal, while providing AZL with the flexibility to easily adapt it to individual pension funds and other business requirements.
Boston College & Mendix
During Fall semester 2017, Professor George Wyner, who teaches Systems Analysis & Design at Boston College, joined the Mendix University Program by using the Mendix platform in his curriculum. Students built apps on the Mendix platform for their semester-long project, and the final app demos were impressive. One group built an app to ease up students’ course approval process for studying abroad. Overall, students were able to add features and functionalities such as API, mobile platform, and built-in chats to their applications.
You can read more about it here!
I interned for Mendix the Summer after my freshman year in their Boston office. For my first week, I enrolled in the 3-day, Mendix Rapid Developer training so that I can become a certified Rapid Developer. The course provided me with basic knowledge about the Mendix platform and the theories behind low-code. It was my first time learning about low-code platforms, and I, with the help of my course instructor, was able to build a simple app for gym members to sign up for classes by the end of my training. I had a really great experience at Mendix had the opportunity to meet and talk to with their brilliant developers and CTO about the company platform.
Technology is constantly evolving, and it affects how businesses serve their customers. Low-code is the future because it is able to adapt well to both the business and technology changes. More importantly, it drives new innovations with less time-consuming labor.