Developing an application is a complex process, with many factors involved. Each step of application development is, in itself, a unique, and distinct endeavor. And a plethora of challenges can crop up between ideation and deployment.
In this blog, we’ll take a look at some of the prominent challenges that slow down application development, and how building applications on Zoho Creator, a low-code platform, can help circumvent them.
Challenge 1: Constantly changing requirements
Application development begins when the scope document including the software requirements is in place. The client, after deliberation with the stakeholders, then agrees upon an initial set of requirements. However, more often than not, during the application development process, the client comes back with more requirements. The client evaluates the minimum viable products (MVPs) and the prototypes, gets ideas for new features, and then proposes them to the application developers.
There are several reasons for changing requirements: unforeseen problems, and evolving needs, among many others. Constantly changing requirements hinder the application development process, because it necessitates a return to the whiteboard for the developers.
The solution? A software development methodology that supports modular form-based feature development. This approach is the essence of how one builds applications on Zoho Creator. Your application’s requirements are abstracted into “forms,” which are built simply by dragging and dropping form fields. These forms are modular—they exist independently of other forms. And in the case of fetching data between forms, a feature called a “lookup field” gets the job done. An added bonus to this process is that Zoho Creator automatically generates data reports for each form built.
So when the client comes back with a new requirement, the solution is simple: a new form is built for the new requirement, and a corresponding workflow is created to manipulate the data collected. This is in stark contrast to typical application development methodologies, where adding new features needs the creation of new modules which can break the entire infrastructure of the product.
Challenge 2: Bugs, defects, and errors—the need for testing and quality assurance
Programming languages sometimes behave in mysterious ways. Every line of code:
Is a potential hotbed for bugs, defects, and errors
Has the potential to have dozens or hundreds of possible state transitions, outputs, and dependencies
Is bound to be impacted by every other line of code
This necessitates extensive testing of the applications you’re developing, which is an added burden on top of the already formidable task of application development.
When developing an application, would you choose to focus on implementing features or exhaustively testing them before deployment? For many companies, doing both is not a viable option.
The solution? Zoho Creator, the already tested application development platform. You don’t need to perform any type of testing, white box or black box, on applications built using Zoho Creator. The platform is subject to enterprise-grade quality assurance practices at all times, unburdening the user from the task of testing their own apps. The applications built on Creator are always defect and bug free.
Challenge 3: Poorly written code
Programmers are plentiful—but pragmatic and proficient ones aren’t. Code written by inexperienced programmers leads to faults, performance issues, and a slew of other problems. These problems need to be nipped in the bud, or else they’ll lead shipping a poorly coded product. This is counter-productive to the application development process, as each iteration of the product will have its development time prolonged due to the issues that crop up from poor code.
And it’s important to remember that the conceptual design of programming languages can contribute to poorly written code. This is because there are idiosyncrasies involved in the syntax and semantics of any programming language.
The solution? Deluge, Zoho Creator’s dedicated scripting language.
Data Enriched Language for the Universal Grid Environment (Deluge) has been engineered from the ground up to create innately elegant and beautiful code. The syntax of Deluge has been designed in a way that it inherently guarantees code efficiency. And the semantics of Deluge are engineered in such a way that there are zero possibilities for redundancies. Even a novice programmer can program elegant, maintainable, and modular scripts using Deluge.
Challenge 4: Difficulties in achieving a pleasing user interface
The user interface, or UI, is one of the most vital components of any application, as it dictates how the user perceives the application and its usability. No matter how complicated, powerful, and capable the application’s logic is, if the UI is not appealing, then the user will regard it as a shortcoming.
In order to design an intuitive and appealing user interface, you need a team of expert front-end developers. And the user interface design process is, in itself, a distinct software engineering endeavor, which costs time, and by effect, money.
The solution? The prebuilt UI-building capability provided by the Zoho Creator platform. Creator offers sleek, modern UI-building features which can augment the visual appeal of the applications engineered on the platform. By dragging and dropping the desired elements, an application’s visual dashboard can be designed in minutes. And a wide variety of ready-made widgets are available for designing the application’s user interface—no need for separate UI and front-end programming teams.
Challenge 5: The need for applications to be future-proof
As technology advances, deployed applications rapidly become outdated from a technical perspective. You need to keep your apps updated—as they ensure application integrity, security, and performance—and this requires additional development effort and expenditure. Each software update means going back to the basics of the codebase, and making modifications and adding new features. This renders the application development process incomplete at all times, as the need for technical updates is a constant reality.
The solution? Leave the application updates to the platform you build the applications on.
Zoho Creator periodically rolls out updates to all applications built on the platform. They include:
Technical upgrades to the overall capabilities of the platform
New feature updates that can be utilized in your applications
Semantic code updates which enhance Deluge’s capabilities
Security and performance-related upgrades
Thus, the tedious task of keeping your applications up-to-date is taken off your hands, and placed into the care of the production-tested, always-up-to-date Creator platform. Your applications are continually updated, and all you need to do is enhance your application with new features or workflows, whenever needed.
Challenge 6: Building the same application for multiple platforms
Today, applications are accessed via multiple platforms, such as the web, iOS devices, and Android devices. Separate teams of programmers are required to build for each platform, as the technicalities of each one are different. This adds to your expenses and prolongs the application development process.
The solution? Build once, deploy everywhere. The applications you build on Creator can be deployed in one-click to the web and all mobile platforms. This renders obsolete the need for separate development teams for different platforms, thus saving you time and money.
Delegate the complex aspects of application development to Zoho Creator
By delegating the intricacies of application development to the Zoho Creator platform, you can circumvent the pressing challenges that slow down the entire process. This saves you time and a substantial amount of money. But it also allows you to focus on your application’s logic and core functionalities, instead of wasting time on vestigial aspects of development.
Start building your game-changing applications on Zoho Creator today!