A low-code platform like Linx provides a development environment that programmers can use to create application software through graphical user interfaces and configuration, instead of relying exclusively on traditional computer programming (“hand coding”). So why do we do it?
REASON 1 – Speed
Competitive business landscapes require businesses to increase their delivery speed and lower their costs, while still delivering quality products and services. Where software development and IT services, in general, are concerned, it is no different. Solutions must be delivered at speed and cost levels to enhance overall business competitiveness, not hamper it.
Consider for example that in Linx, the effort of setting up a timer service that automatically executes a process that first connects to your Xero account, extracts overdue invoice details, then writes them to a file and sends the file via email to key stakeholders, literally only takes a few minutes. Coding such a solution would take much longer. It would involve a coder with very specific and costly coding skills – someone who might already be allocated to other projects and who might only be available in a few weeks’ time, which further decreases the speed at which a business can operate optimally or deliver value to the market. Speed and cost are crucial ingredients to competitiveness. A good low-code development platform goes a long way in achieving this.
REASON 2 – Complexity
The technical and operational complexity of doing business requires tools that can simplify the creation of business solutions. The Linx Designer makes it easy for a user to:
- See the bigger picture of a solution, yet quickly access and work on the details of the solution.
- Include from the ever-growing library of plugins (and their associated functions, services and types) those components required in a solution by dragging and dropping them in the desired sequence onto the design palette.
- Easily set the variables and parameters associated with functions, services and data types, which are listed as configurable properties in Linx.
- Debug a solution to ensure its expected functioning and easily troubleshoot possible errors.
- Deploy a solution to the Linx Server to start automated services or host REST API’s.
REASON 3 – IAAP
The opportunities presented by integrating 3rd party systems via API’s require tools that can provide quick and reliable integration capability to overcome the technical challenges of systems integration. Linx provides pre-packaged plugins to integrate various AWS API’s (including S3, EC2, SNS and SQS), Google Drive, Google Sheets, Xero, and more. Linx also makes it easy to expose your own REST web service for other applications to connect to your application.
REASON 4 – Easy Automation
The need for continuous improvement of business process efficiencies, especially around automation, requires tools that can rapidly and effectively automate complex workflows.
Linx provides various services for automation, including a Timer service that will execute your process at a predetermined time, for example emailing a sales report every morning at 7 am. Linx also comes with a Directory Watch service that will execute your process under predetermined circumstances, for example when a change occurs to a specific file or directory, a copy could be backed up on your server, or even backed up on AWS S3 (using the Linx plugin for AWS S3).
REASON 5 – General Purpose Code
Talent shortages create the need for tools that can minimise coding, eliminate repetitive tasks, and simplify difficult and time-consuming systems integration tasks. As a low-code development platform, Linx does most of the “coding” for you. It is also a general-purpose platform that is an abstraction of programming itself, not domain, process or tooling specific. This means it can be used for any backend application in any domain with no limitations on connections to other tools and services.
For example, by dragging and dropping a specific function into your solution and setting its properties, the underlying code is created for you without you needing to know anything about the code syntax. In fact, you don’t even have to know which programming language is being used in the background to make it all work.
Further reading: Low-code vs hand code
A platform for evolvable systems
We all know that the software we are building today is most likely not the software that would be running a year later. Times change, businesses changes, requirements change. Linx provides a flexible and scalable tool for this exact purpose. Besides supporting all the standards, formats, and protocols you need to connect systems and build autonomous trigger-driven workflows, the low-code environment allows for rapid development, design, testing and deployment of new processes to ensure your business can make modern architecture a reality without the burden of upgrading hardware, skills or headcount.
Modern IT needs modern thinking
Five years ago waterfall applications would have typically taken months to go live, with coffee-laden IT teams spending countless hours translating business requirements into workable designs. Today’s IT is no longer about which software methodology you use but rather how IT supports the business via time-to-business-value for new applications and services.
Ultimately, the modern development model combines learnings and best practices from dozens of different frameworks and technologies. Linx borrows the best technology from BPM, ETL, EAI and API development tools and combined with low code, provides a fast, effective tool for the modern IT pro.
APIs are forever
Successful companies have proven that there is a major opportunity when businesses can bring their legacy systems and applications into the API mould so they can integrate them with modern applications. But APIs can be among your greatest assets or liabilities.
As microservices and cloud computing are streamlining RESTful API design as the future, it is important for developers and architects to address consistency in their applications, from design to deployment. You want to be careful about crafting your API. Good APIs create long-term solutions; bad ones create long-term support nightmares. APIs touch on so many different aspects of the digital platform ecosystem of a company so having a product that eases the pain of connecting various applications and managing the flow of data in a disciplined way is surely a win. Linx allows for fast connections and makes it trivially simple to deploy custom business logic on the server-side. The result is that data flows will be at the centre of innovation in integrations for the foreseeable future. In addition, the powerful programming functions allow for faster development of all things API, including event handlers which can be triggered when your app makes API calls.