By August 10, 2020

The Difference Between Low-Code Development and Traditional Coding

There are numerous ways to develop software, but we could broadly divide them into two categories: traditional coding and low-code development.

Traditional coding is a manual process, which means that a person creates the program. But without anyone programming the logic, you have to manually formulate or code rules. We have the input data, and someone possessing the required programming skills has coded a program that uses that data and runs on a computer to produce the desired output.

Low-code, on the other hand, means that a person builds the application with no need of programming skills, and results are fast. Developers would need to be proficient in writing code and executing applications, and it honestly takes more time compared to low-code development.

Some traditional coding platforms have built-in low-code capabilities, making them accessible to both non-technical and technical users. However, low-code platforms may require the ability to create new code as part of building business applications.

Low-code platforms do not only focus on the development part of the application, but also on all stages of the life of the latter.

If you are interested in programming, you may have already read about low-code development. If so, you are probably wondering what it means exactly to think like a programmer. And especially, how do we go about it?

What Is Low-Code and How Is It Used?

Let's start with the low-code concept. Low-code development is a way for developers to design applications quickly and with minimal manual programming. Using a low-code platform is similar to an IDE (Integrated Development Environment) in that it contains a number of functionalities that complement the way developers work and the tools they need.

However, it is much more than a traditional IDE. In short, low-code is the visual development of existing code to create applications, as if by a “layperson,” in which each block has its own code that is not necessary to touch.

Since it can completely replace the traditional manual programming method of a complete application, experienced developers can work smarter and faster, without having to deal with repetitive programming. Instead, they can focus on creating that 10% of the application that makes it different from the rest and adds value to the customer.

The alternative is to write thousands of complex lines of code and syntax (and then debug them). By avoiding this and creating applications visually, you can develop applications much faster and get the most out of your team of developers.

Advantages of Programming Low-Code

We will summarize in four ideas the main benefits of programming using a low-code development approach:

  • Development speed: Using low-code you can create applications for multiple platforms simultaneously and show the minimum viable products to those involved in weeks or even days.
  • Resource optimization: If you work on a large project, with low-code you no longer have to rely on developers with specialized knowledge of highly technical programming topics, which means that things are done faster and at a lower cost. With low-code, you invest 80% of the time in understanding the customer's needs and analyzing the requirements of each company. Program in the other 20% with little code.
  • Low risk and high return on investment: With low-code development technologies, its security processes are robust, and data integration and cross-platform support are already built-in as standard and can be easily customized. It involves less risk and allows more time to focus on the customer's business.
  • Rapid deployment: The days of launching and deploying an application can be a stressful experience. With low-code platforms, pre-deployment crash tests ensure that applications work as intended. And if there is any unexpected behavior, you can roll back the changes with a few clicks.

Each business now has the possibility of integrating its specificity into its software offering, so it is clear that the so-called classic approach in the sense of a management software package is no longer adapted to changes in its needs.

What Is Traditional Coding?

Traditional programming is a technique that uses the program development methodology aimed at improving the quality, clarity, and development time of programs, making it much easier to understand.

The main characteristic of this programming technique is that it is made up of code segments which can consist of instruction up to several pages. Each one of these segments must have only one entry point and one exit point of data. This will make them read sequentially from start to finish, without losing continuity.

Advantages of Programming with Traditional Coding Based on C++ Programing

Because structured programming is made up of well-defined segments, programs are simpler, faster, and easier to understand. Moreover, they can be read sequentially and can be corrected or modified after completion.

It is a simple language kernel, with important added functionality, such as math and file management functions, provided by libraries. It is also a very flexible language that allows programming with multiple styles. One of the most widely used is the structured “not taken to the extreme” (allowing certain break licenses).

Traditional programming has a type system that helps in preventing meaningless operations, and it uses a preprocessing language, the C preprocessor, for tasks like defining macros and including multiple source code files.

It offers access to low-level memory through the use of pointers, helps in handling interruptions to the processor with the help of unions, and offers a reduced set of keywords.

Traditional coding also  makes it possible to write the codes more easily and quickly, thus increasing the efficiency of the programmers.

There is a sharp increase in demand for custom business applications. The number of online services offered to businesses and individuals has exploded in recent years.

Comparison of C or Low-Code

A so-called low-code platform is a development platform allowing the rapid realization and deployment of complex business applications while limiting the development effort as much as possible. It allows quickly writing new compilers for new platforms, keeps what the program really does under the direct control of the programmer, and allows the implementation of the most natural solution for each platform.

This is why C is often more efficient than other languages. Typically, only careful assembly language programming produces faster code, giving full control over the machine, although advances in C compilers and the increasing complexity of modern microprocessors have gradually reduced this difference.

In some cases, a nonexistent characteristic can be approximated.

For example, the original implementation of C ++ consisted of a preprocessor that translated C ++ source code into C. Most object-oriented functions include a special pointer, which is usually called “this,” which refers to the object to which it belongs — the function. By passing this pointer as a function argument, this functionality can be performed in C.

With a low-code platform, developers and power builders can build on these ready-to-use applications. Alternatively, they can start from scratch, using advanced processing modeling, back-end scripts, and open APIs to integrate with third-party services and provide a truly personalized visual interface.

More technical-minded business users and developers can use low-code platforms to create business-class applications that include robust security, compliance, auditing, and permission capabilities. This platform enables rapid application delivery with a minimum of hand-coding and quick setup.

The use of low-code allows you to create applications without coding. This means that the platform automatically codes the application according to the configurations and settings to be defined.

The Best of Both Worlds

The low-code platform is a meeting between two worlds. It combines the flexibility of specific development and the robustness of software packages.

In this sense it provides all the tools necessary to add the right line of code in the right place, which will override the default behavior. In addition, it is often open to the world and can be integrated either with external libraries or with existing web services.

A low-code platform brings together developers and business users on a rapid, iterative, and collaborative co-construction of the application. In fact, the application can be quickly implemented, deployed, and modified according to the needs of the business, and all this without the need for specific low-level knowledge.

About the author

Costa Lamprou

Costa Lamprou is the head of PPC at The Elearning Industry Network. With experience from everything ranging from product development and sales to training and PPC, Costa helps eLearning businesses reach their full lead gen potential. When he isn’t helping clients succeed, Costa likes to expand his marketing horizons with the help of eLearning courses.