Elastic Computing Meets Low Code
The real-world benefits of Low Code platforms and Elastic Computing for business from the perspective of a solutions consultant.
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Elastic Computing Meets Low Code
As we move into the cloud computing era, we’ve seen the floodgates open and waves of new development frameworks being released to take advantage of every opportunity that clouds computing technologies offer.
To the non-technical audience, it can become overwhelming and sometimes difficult to navigate these waters into new frontiers. For that reason, we’re going to breakdown the technical jargon into the real world benefits.
Cloud Computing vs. On-Premise
Traditionally, organizations have become accustomed to building server facilities on site. Under the microscope, the indirect costs start to add up, significantly - floor space, security, fire suppressors, backup power and networking infrastructure, and the cost of highly talented staff to maintain and manage the infrastructure – just to name a few. Then there’s the cost to duplicate all of this at a disaster recovery site.
Cloud computing takes away most of this burden, by moving much of this infrastructure into a specialist service provider's premise, offering savings through economies of scale. Not only do you save on the like-for-like costs, but you also see efficiencies through on-demand pricing models (billing per hour).
Some of the key benefits:
- Scale computing resources on demand.
- You no longer need to have multiple (and expensive) servers sitting idle on-site for most times, only to be fully utilized for peak demand, such as month-end activities.
- With the ability to scale in near real-time, you only get charged for resources as you use it.
- Most of the infrastructure and operating system maintenance is handled by the service provider
- The leading providers have invested significantly into redundancy, resilience, and security.
- When a server fails, you may never notice it, it just works seamlessly.
- Additional backup and replication services can often be configured in minutes, in various locations in your region, or internationally based on your preference or regulatory requirements.
- The largest industries in the world, including banks and financial institutions that have the strictest data handling and uptime requirements, have been using these services for years.
At the time of writing, the largest service providers include Amazon (AWS) and Microsoft (Azure), capturing 60% of the cloud computing market. Both have committed to South African data centers, to further support local regulations around data storage. Gartner predicts that by 2022, up to 60% of organizations will be using cloud technologies, signaling the industry shift from traditional to cloud-based infrastructure.
Cloud computing comes in various configurations. You can create a dedicated virtual machine to shadow your existing servers and migrate most of your applications as is onto the cloud platform, or you can run in a Software as a Service (SaaS) model that allows you to pick specific features as you need at the operating system level. Many of the SaaS features allow you to take advantage of native capabilities available on the platform, in theory, but not every organization or business unit has the need or the resources to re-develop for that level of configurability.
While each cloud platform, may offer unique features and plugins within their suite, it may require significant investment into re-training of developers, re-development of applications, and lock-in to a specific service provider, the economics may not support every business case, specially customized back-office solutions or point solutions for a specific business unit and it may be more feasible to simply virtualize as an existing server as is, on the cloud platform.
Enter Low Code
A low code development platform can be used to build powerful software applications with little to no coding required. It consists of an intuitive drag and drop interface closer to natural language and the ability to build applications just as powerful as a conventional coding platform for most business applications. Low code platforms typically have short learning curves and support development by seasoned developers or technical business users with little coding experience.
Forrester predicts that most developers will work outside of Centralized IT functions as companies continue to make deploying software a crucial part of their business model. The research further predicts that by mid-2020, half of the developers will be using, or planning to use low code products.
As many organizations move fast to remain competitive in the world of automation to gain operational efficiencies, we are seeing trends in which people are becoming multi-disciplinary and self-serving – utilizing any available tools to automate mundane tasks so that they can focus on solving the problems to push the organization forward while doing more meaningful work.
With the high volumes of software projects and limited capacity to deliver, the leading organizations have turned to low code platforms to deliver more, with significantly shorter time-frames, at a fraction of the cost – while maintaining the same high standards and performance that enterprises demand.
Low code platforms have the added advantage of reusable connectors (plugins) to easily integrate with third-party applications without the need for strong technical skills or to study complex documentation. Connectors are pre-built, with all the heavy lifting done by the makers of low code platforms, so you can simply drag, drop, and map parameters on an easy to configure interface.
Most low code platforms include connectors to the most common business applications including Email, Databases, Cloud Services, FTP, Sharepoint & Office Documents, Accounting software, CRM software, and Web Services to name a few.
The Synergy Between Cloud Computing and Low Code.
When low code meets the cloud, endless opportunities arise. Applications can be easily built to take advantage of dynamic resource scaling to meet demand at a point in time, reducing operating costs.
While many cloud vendors have equally powerful low code tools on their respective platforms, many of these tend to be proprietary and run exclusively on their cloud platform so you are locked in with the only option to migrate out being to redevelop most of your applications should you wish to move to a different infrastructure platform.
Low code platforms that are built agnostic to the server infrastructure, can easily be migrated between cloud platforms or local infrastructure, giving you more control and flexibility.
Linx is one of many powerful low code platforms trusted by enterprises to capitalize on the benefits of lower costs and shorter times to market to maintain a competitive edge. What sets Linx apart from the rest is the unrestricted access to try before you buy. The Developer IDE and supporting documentation are available to the public to try for free with no feature or time restrictions, obligations, or payment information required upfront. Once you are confident that Linx is right for you, you can purchase a license to the Server module to host and automate your solution.
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