Modern development - Abbyy: go low (code), go open (source) & go forward
This series is devoted to examining the leading trends that go towards defining the shape of modern software application development.
As we have initially discussed here, with so many new platform-level changes now playing out across the technology landscape, how should we think about the cloud-native, open-compliant, mobile-first, Agile-enriched, AI-fuelled, bot-filled world of coding and how do these forces now come together to create the new world of modern programming?
This contribution comes from Abbyy, CIO Anthony Macciola and Abbyy AI evangelist Ivan Yamshchikov — Abbyy is known for its foundations in document capture & management… and its now extended scope in what it calls ‘Digital IQ’ (and related process intelligence technologies) for the enterprise.
Macciola and Yamshchikov write as follows…
Open source has fundamentally influenced modern software development in a way that’s impacted every industry, market… and every use case. By providing new frameworks, open source often serves as a foundation from which to experiment, build and refine new innovative models.
Many developers realise their tools could be useful in a much broader context beyond their particular area of expertise. They know their technologies could be utilised for a wide range of use cases beyond just those served by their existing applications. Additionally, they are interested in third-party feedback and contribution to further improve the code. So, with that drive to release additional innovation in mind… they feel the need to open source their frameworks and allow the community to make their innovations bigger and more impactful.
Facilitating progress through experimentation
As artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies become increasingly ubiquitous, brand new use cases are constantly being revealed. It’s important for developers to have the freedom to experiment in order to discover novel applications and customer experiences that might be groundbreaking.
Open source frameworks enable them to experiment across various platforms in a manner that doesn’t require extensive investment upfront in terms of time, budget or resources. This reduces some of the initial workload in the development process and facilitates greater ease of experimentation.
Driving impactful cross-platform software
Consumers and business users want solutions that work and deliver consistent user experience across different devices, settings, and circumstances.
With open source, modern developers are able to leverage frameworks that are deployable on a wide range of platforms, which broadens the market for new solutions while making these technologies simpler to apply. Choosing a specific toolkit for every single platform requires more money and more people on the development, testing and QA side whereas cross-platform frameworks are more accessible and easier to work with.
Companies that feel like their products are universal and are looking to have access to different markets look for cross-platform solutions.
Accelerating digital transformation through democratisation
Democratisation has been fundamental for a number of advancements in modern software, including low-code applications, which have become indispensable in driving digital agility. Low-code solutions empower the business user – regardless of technical proficiency – to have a greater role in digital transformation initiatives.
We’ve seen a constant march towards the simplification of software solutions with the primary objective of expanding the user base. The easier applications are to set up and use, the wider the user base becomes, which reduces dependency on IT services.
As AI becomes more accessible, business users from a very broad range of specialties will be able to easily integrate powerful technologies into their front and back office processes in ways that are most impactful for the objectives of their particular business unit. Low code is helping to drive the democratisation of AI.
Sharing & collaboration
Modern software is solving some of today’s biggest challenges. Many of these challenges have already been addressed by utilising low-code solutions to empower a wider range of users to lead in the digital-first era and by leveraging the most powerful technology frameworks on the market through open source.
The overarching trend is that software development is moving in the direction of greater sharing and collaboration. Many developers would rather not hold onto their code, instead, they would prefer to share their frameworks with the community who are able to utilise them and take their technology even further.
Modern software development is about building something bigger than its original application. More and more developers invite the global community to collaborate with them, which benefits their market segments and, most importantly, society at large.