No Code with Shawn Wang

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The software category known as “no-code” describes a set of tools that can be used to build software without writing large amounts of code in a programming language.

No-code tools use visual interfaces such as spreadsheets and web based drag-and-drop systems. In previous shows, we have covered some of the prominent no-code products such as Airtable, Webflow, and Bubble. It is clear that no-code tools can be used to build core software infrastructure in a manner that is more abstract than the typical software engineering model of writing code.

No-code tools do not solve everything. You can’t use a no-code tool to build a high performance distributed database, or a real-time multiplayer video game. But they are certainly useful for building internal tools and basic CRUD applications.

We know that no-code tools can create value. But how do they fit into the overall workflow of a software company? How should teams be arranged now that knowledge workers can build certain kinds of software without writing code? And how should no-code systems interface with the monoliths, microservices, and APIs that we have building for years?

Shawn Wang is an engineer with Netlify, a cloud provider that is focused on delivering high-quality development and deployment experience. Netlify is not a no-code platform, but Shawn has explored and written about the potential of no-code systems. Since he comes from a code-heavy background, he is well-positioned to give a realistic perspective on how no-code systems might evolve to play a role in the typical software development lifecycle.

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