The age-old problem chasing Enterprise IT custom application software development is the inability to deliver applications on time and at the speed with which business demands. Some stats here will validate this:
One in six projects have a cost overrun of 200%, on average, and a schedule overrun of almost 70%. Source: HBR Study
75% of business and IT executives anticipate their software projects will fail. Source: Geneca Study
Enterprises over the years have been dealing with some key challenges not limited to, complexity in dealing with technology stacks, lack of faster approaches to application development, lack of business user participation through the lifecycle, lack of on-demand infrastructure readiness etc.
Another major complaint of employees is the lack of usability and user experience design of enterprise applications. Former NYTimes.com Design Director Khoi Vinh captured this common frustration in his seminal 2007 article.
If it looks like a cow, swims like a dolphin and quacks like a duck, It must be Enterprise Software
Now let us take a step back and talk about how we solve this enterprise conundrum of developing custom applications at rapid pace with good-looking user experience and with enterprise standards. To do this, let us understand a concept called Rapid Application Development and its history.
A system development approach that employs tools, techniques, and methodologies designed to speed application development. Source: Fundamentals of Information Systems 7th Edition by Ralph Stair and George Reynolds
RAD tools have been around since the late 80’s. Multiple attempts have been made to improve application development productivity. Historically, the key focus of these tools was mostly just on code generation. Developers still had to worry about app infrastructure, code openness and extensibility, application integration plumbing, hosting, and monitoring of apps. While these tools helped in developer productivity, it came short of fulfilling the enterprise desire to create applications that are rich in user experiences.
The consumerization of IT has raised the bar with respect to User Experience and Usability. Enterprises are expected to carry over the learnings from the consumer world and pay high attention to this. We have witnessed the emergence of these technologies that has fundamentally shaped the nature of computing. These include and are not limited to, user-centered design, cloud computing, Web APIs, Enterprise mobility, Client-Side Development Frameworks, and Continuous delivery.
So the next logical question is can we combine the modern technological innovations and RAD together to provide a wholesome platform to Enterprises looking to develop modern user-centric responsive custom web applications at speeds that can match business expectations.
This is the emergence of what I call Modern RAD (Modern Rapid Application Delivery) platforms.
Modern RAD not only focuses on reducing application development timelines, but also addresses a whole slew of other related aspects of modern web applications required for today’s modern enterprise. Modern RAD emphasizes on:
Is Modern Rapid Application Development the answer to the problems that plague today’s Enterprise IT? Or is it too good to be true? What do you think?
You can also watch the recorded videos of our Webinar Modern RAD - Too good to be true?, where we have discussed modern RAD and evaluate its potential for enterprises to cope with rapidly evolving business demands.
A new WaveMaker is here! If WaveMaker 7 was about APIs, WaveMaker 7.6 was about templates, WaveMaker 8 is about mobile apps and modern UI. This reaffirms our commitment to integration, usability, and mobility, which we believe are the key pillars of modern application delivery. Along with WaveMaker 8, we are also releasing WaveMaker Online so that you can create web and mobile apps on the cloud, without any infrastructure or setup hassles.
Here's the list of some of the major new features in WaveMaker 8. You can find the full list of features and improvements on the Releases Notes page.
You can now build hybrid mobile apps using WaveMaker. Hybrid mobile apps are an easy way to create apps that can take advantage of device features like camera, geo-location, etc., and create a platform-specific installer using Apache Cordova. WaveMaker for Hybrid Mobile apps is in its alpha version with support for building Android-based apps and will be enhanced in the upcoming releases.
WaveMaker 8 brings you an improved Studio with a modern UI without compromising the familiar feeling of Studio 7. Existing users will instantly notice the increased real estate for the canvas. Also, previewing your apps for multiple devices and resolutions is easier than ever. Collaborating with other developers and contributors is now much more integrated and seamless.
Whether it is our open-source Community Edition or the open systems stack, we are committed to providing software that is free from vendor lock-in.
With WaveMaker 8, you can now push your application's source code to an external repository such as GitHub, Stash or Bitbucket. What this means is that you own the source code of your application by pushing it a public or SaaS repository of your choice.
WaveMaker 8 also introduces the option to deploy apps to your Amazon Web Services (AWS) account. In other words, WaveMaker does not charge any markup for deployment. You pay the deployment costs directly to your hosting provider, reducing your application delivery costs.
With WaveMaker 8, small and medium businesses, project consultants and enterprise workgroups can start building apps from day one using the same visual Rapid Application Development or RAD platform used by WaveMaker’s enterprise customers, without the hassles of investing in additional hardware or setting up the software environment.
Existing WaveMaker Online users can log in with the same credentials. Your projects will continue to work as-is.
Hope you have a great time creating apps with WaveMaker!
As we are all aware, in today's hyper-connected world of applications, it is not uncommon for any product, service, or application to have APIs. APIs (Application Programming Interface) has become the de-facto foundational technology for enterprise app development and more specifically for Web applications.
An API-Centric or API-Driven Web Application is a web application that basically executes most, if not, all of its functionality through API calls. In an API-Centric web application, the front-end communicates with the backend using just APIs.
There are a number of advantages of developing an API-centric web application, namely,
In this post, we will see how developers can easily create API-Centric Web applications using WaveMaker Studio. Using Import functionality, a developer can use a wizard to import REST, SOAP APIs into the application development. Figure 1, shows how a REST API is imported in Studio,
REST APIs can be secured or non-secured. WaveMaker REST API Import Wizard allows for quick consumption of Secured as well as Non-Secured REST APIs. Secured APIs can be imported in 2 ways,
API-Centric Applications also make it easier for external applications (Mobile as well as Web) to integrate into it easily. It does it by exposing REST APIs to the external world.
WaveMaker Studio soon  will have support for creating a Swagger 2.0 compliant API Specification file for the auto-generated REST APIs as part of the Application developed. See the previous post on API Designer that talks about Studio-Auto generating REST APIs. In the upcoming version, the API Designer will generate Swagger conformant REST API documentation. More about it in a later blog post. Figure 4 shows below the Swagger 2.0 document for the HR DB (Sample DB) REST APIs auto-generated by Studio.
This Swagger document can also be taken and used to publish the APIs for the external world using WaveMaker Gateway product.
Mayur Shah (email@example.com)
WaveMaker Passionate Technologist