The best and worst of no-code development

No-code development is approaching faster. Let’s see the best and worst of what’s growing on the technological horizon.

Fidel Chaves
6 min read

No-code development

The no-code revolution is starting, and we are on board. Let’s review the best and worst of no-code development. Making websites and applications without writing a line is here, almost. No-code development refers to creating a project with as little coding as possible, making its adoption more democratic.

 

What is the no-code revolution? No-code development platforms allow developers and non-programmers to create applications, software, and websites without coding, achieved through a graphical user interface (GUI) and configuration instead of traditional programming.

 

The idea behind no-code development is to facilitate the creation of web applications, desktop applications, websites, cloud software, anything you need—all of this while writing the least amount of code possible. No-code development would free up time to focus on designing, managing, and organizing a better product rather than writing code to make it work.

Low code vs. traditional coding

Isn’t hand-coding better? I couldn’t make a blanket statement here. Between making your project real or not making anything at all: existence is better. If you are a skilled programmer or have access to one, it might not be your choice, but most people are not in that position.

 

In any case, it really depends on the situation, the person, the strategy, and the place. With hand coding, the sky's the limit: anything you can imagine can be done. It just requires practice, time, and money, but not everyone has those three together.

 

If you want to develop the next AI-powered self-driving spaceship, you should definitely learn to code. If your objective is to open up a website for your local cupcake shop, a no-code solution could suffice. No need for everyone to do the same thing. There is a thing called the division of labor that has worked pretty well for us since the industrial revolution.

 

Will it replace developers? No. Not now, not ever. No-code development will play a crucial role in the future, but it will never replace developers. In any case, the world will always need developers.

What is a no-code tool?

A no-code tool is anything that facilitates you in creating a digital product without touching the code—no opening of a terminal, no learning a new language. You directly interact with a dedicated graphical user interface.

 

Let’s review some of the already available no-code or low code tools.

NoCode Website development

  • Webflow: helps you visually design websites and still makes you think like a front-end developer.
  • Editor X: is a fully-fledged visual website building tool that allows you to do most things instantaneously.

NoCode Mobile development

  • Bravo: focused on designers using Figma and uploading their files to transform them into apps directly.
  • Supernova: makes a really similar thing but for Sketch users.

Miscellaneous honorable mentions

  • Notion: looks like a note-taking app; hides much more.
  • Anima: form design to code with high fidelity.
  • Play: create mobile applications from a mobile application.

 

Thanks to these options, designers are beginning to make mobile applications directly, creating the new category of no-code-dev. As weird as it sounds, it’s happening.

No-code development modularity

Today, you can put together a bunch of microservices to create an application. We talked about APIs and microservices before. Think of having a bunch of pre-coded functionalities that work like LEGO bricks.

 

You can then combine them to create a service larger than the sum of its parts. Thanks to this, we can tap on the creativity of many people that don’t have the time, interest, or energy to learn code.

 

This trend is very much in line with the open-source philosophy and open-source sense of community. Making the pieces available to everyone creates opportunities for other people to remix the parts and make amazing new products.

 

Of course, we will always need developers to create the microservices, APIs, and a bunch of functionalities in the first place. But thanks to the accumulation of libraries and building blocks, I believe the growing repository will make no-code development a reality any time soon.

The future of no-code devs

Developers tend to automate their tasks, which can seem counterintuitive; why would they code themselves out of their job? The thing is, automation and orchestration have a history of freeing up time to go into doing other things. I don’t want to underestimate the possibilities of automation taking up most of our current jobs but there is a trend where we humans find other things, often more meaningful ones, to do with our newly discovered free time.

 

In any case, expect disruption. If no-code development becomes mainstream and anyone could create an app on their smartphones with minimal or no development knowledge, the number of ideas poured into the world would be amazing. Think of how alphabetization changed literature and art forever.

 

Literacy is approaching 100% in most of the world, compared to just a few hundred years ago when that number was closer to 10 or 20%. We could be talking about a change of that magnitude.

 

Like every technology, this could be used both for good or ill. A hammer is just a hammer. At the same time, we could see a growing reliance on SaaS companies that could be the first in line to offer these kinds of solutions. The worst of this could be the hidden centralization behind decentralized creation.

 

We’ve seen how the internet has changed from Web 1.0 to 2.0, and even some are talking about 3.0 now. We are experiencing how blockchain technology and the creator economy change how we think about production. How could our world change when everyone could have access to the development power that only corporations hold now?

 

At Awkbit, we thrive on the democratization of technology and development. We are believers in open-source innovation and communities. We believe that a world where everyone has access to making their projects come true would be a richer, more diverse world. We will be following this trend closely and hope you do too.

 

Are you ready for a world where ideas come to life with an ease never seen before?

Reach Out!

Sources & further reading