What is Low code platform in development?

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Low code represents graphical modeling methods without the use of classic programming techniques. This should save time and effort. The low-code platform, on the other hand, provides the development environment and runtime.

Purpose in IT

Low code, which translates to “little code”, describes a special platform category with the aim of making applications quickly and still professionally buildable, even without programming expertise. Using a visually appealing UI interface, the corresponding elements are to be configured and integrated into the existing systems with high quality.

Above all, the existing lack of resources in numerous IT departments forms the basis for the use of low-code platforms to meet the ever-increasing need for individual applications. Without having to resort to complex programming codes, the creation of new applications is not only easier, but above all considerably faster and cheaper.

Features of low-code platforms

The goal of the low-code platform is to provide a modern and simple concept for visual modeling. By integrating the appropriate drag-and-drop interfaces, new applications adapt to the existing structures as best as possible in order to enrich IT sustainably. The constant scalability of the low-code platform also ensures a certain degree of variability and a high level of security when pending corrections. In this way, the mobility of one’s own IT processes in the company is promoted without additional programming effort.

Development of low-code platforms

To use the low-code platform, a comparison with the classic software creation tools is useful. There is a classic data store, an IDE, a kind of framework, a development language and numerous third-party APIs. In this respect, the creation of software consists of numerous small parts that can be combined to form a functioning unit.

In order to manage and provide the application, the analysis and correction of errors that occur as well as the integration, monitoring and scaling are then necessary. All these factors are combined with one another via the low-code platform in a coherent tool suite, through which all components are visually visible. This means that the administrator of the platform has only a few tasks, which means that several applications can be easily controlled at the same time.

Low-code platform: how it works

The low-code platform is fundamentally based on a multitude of different settings, in which several components can always be found. Above all, visual development is one of the core functions through which the business processes and the associated data models can be drawn. All important factors can be viewed via a user interface in order to ensure that the resulting structures can be controlled.

So that a low-code platform can also be part of corporate IT in the long term, all platforms have comprehensive lifecycle management. The deployment, maintenance and customization of the applications are accompanied with a variety of important options to simplify development.

By integrating the latest tools, adaptation to the desired project management and automatic scaling are sometimes even possible with just one click. There is a fixed sequence of steps in the visual development environment, which functions as a replacement for manual programming. The following four steps are therefore part of the functional use of a low-code platform.

Data modeling

At this point it can be determined which data the new application should save. Some low-code platforms also have the ability to retrieve existing data models from external databases to create new business applications.

External data

The integration of necessary third-party resources enrich the new application to provide a more diverse range of information. This can include, for example, the company’s remaining APIs.

Business logic

In order for the application to work according to a fixed workflow, a fixed scenario must be implemented in advance. The same approach can be used here as when writing methods in ABAP or Java. In order to achieve a high level of reusability, it is also important to maintain the strictest possible separation between the front end and the back end.

User interface

It is important to determine the front end that should be presented to the users of the application. New surfaces can also be created for mobile devices, although the specific requirements of iOS, Android or Windows must be observed. However, by using hybrid applications with Cordova, these specifics are usually easy to achieve.

Integration in existing systems

In order to be able to adapt to the existing structures, the platforms generally enable the smoothest possible integration into the existing systems. This applies at least to the market leaders, which include Zoo Creator and Mended, for example. However, other platforms such as Google Mapmakers rely on a complete system creation via their own services, which also makes integration into non-Google systems difficult. However, by optimizing for business use, it is usually easy to include the previous structures in the visual modeling and also to control them using the new tools of the low-code platform.

In the SAP context, two platforms currently stand out that make a name for themselves through good integration. On one side the Neptune DX platform and on the other side Simplifier. While the app creation at Neptune is strongly reminiscent of the Web Diner SEO cockpit, Simplifier relies on a flowchart-like editor. To ensure integration into existing systems, both platforms rely on the Open framework, which means that the applications fit very well into existing launch pads.

Increasingly more visual development

The peculiarity of the low-code platform is without a doubt the visual development. It has never been easier to access a variety of such services without independent programming. The description of your own data model is ideally controllable in this way, so that a modern and flexible basis for the duplication of your own application can be created. The graphic preparation enables a quick familiarization with the existing structures, from which dependencies and optimization potential can be worked out quickly and with the necessary care.

A basic simplification

Increasing visualization in the area of ​​creating new applications will make it much easier for companies to be successful with their own applications in the future. The ability to go live after a short time and without a long introductory phase means that applications can be updated and adapted to the latest state of the art without any problems. A low-code platform thus enriches the existing company structures in many ways, in order to promote new applications and to react to the changing times.

This article is written by Jack mark who is a marketer and consultant Folio3 Dairy Farm Management Software Company. He also writes for different tech media.

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