Basically, the question with low-code is always, what is it? Is it a toolbox to convert an Excel list into a database? Is it a fun tool and if you need something serious you have to develop it anyway? Fact is – these prejudices had their justification for the 1st or 2nd generation of 4 GL languages (early / mid 90s).

What impressed me massively was ultimately a Proof of Concept (POC), which we had developed both in Java and with Intrexx. The POC represents a machine handover process in which the manufacturer enters all machine parameters and their relationships to one another during the handover, the system checks these, displays errors, and ultimately generates a handover protocol in the case of an error-free handover. In Intrexx, the POC was completely finished and ready for productive use after 3 days of development. The development of the application in Java required 21 days. This is a factor of 7 in the reduction of development time, which is also a reduction in resource commitment and ultimately also represents better app onboarding performance for the business department.

The current generation of low-code technologies not only impresses with its feature robustness and implementation speed, but can certainly hold its own as a production environment in the topics of scaling, availability, resilient, and so on. In this regard, larger low-code providers such as Outsystems, Mendix and Intrexx rely on a robust Java framework as the basic infrastructure. The low-code platforms have understood that lock-in does not work. Customer or department-specific extensions are simply integrated into Java or Groovy, i.e. source code. External systems for data storage or data usage, are integrated via SOAP, REST, Kafka, or import / export routines. In addition, all modern platforms carry “plugs” for all common software systems. So it is no wonder that integration towards SAP, Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, Navision, or even Office solutions is more of a configuration and does not require any development effort.

Low-code has an essential place in the IT landscape with the current technology generation, architecture and feature understanding. On the one hand to massively accelerate app development, but even more to enable IT or business resources to focus on their core topics.