Updated: Aug 30, 2019

Credit by: Soren Kaplan

"Software is eating the world” says Silicon Valley venture capital icon, Mark Andreessen. You name it: personal computers, the internet, mobile devices, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and self-driving cars. Andreessen’s mantra encapsulates the fundamental driver of society’s massive transformation — that software underlies just about every modern-day innovation in today’s technology-driven world, and will continue to do so into the future

Software industry transformation

To gain insight into where the future’s headed, it’s helpful to understand how we arrived at today. We’ve already seen some major transformations in the software industry over the past 35 years:

Graphical User Interface (GUI) Operating Systems — The first Mac OS and Windows operating systems popularized personal computing through visual interfaces and experiences

Software as a Service Business Models — “Pay as you go” services eliminated costly site licenses and accelerated the adoption of new platforms and tools by both consumers and businesses

Cloud Computing — Enabled faster and cheaper development, hosting and support of software solutions by leveraging turn-key infrastructure

Apps -Became prevalent on mobile phones and are now an inherent part of how we talk about and use software across devices and operating systems

Agile Development — Accelerated the process of software development itself

Lean Startup — Provided a framework for creating “minimal viable products” (MVPs) which has fueled the growth of both startups and new applications across industries

Together, these transformations have led to a world with a deep dependency on software technology and an economy driven by software-enabled business models (just think Google, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Facebook, Uber, and more).

The no-code revolution

More and more software applications like Salesforce, Pipedrive, Trello, Airtable, and others have built platforms based on no-code principals. Some of these apps focus on specific functions like sales teams. Others deliver more general collaboration. Whatever the application, no-code software strategies include four areas of focus:

Provide drag and drop “widgets” or other elements that can be visually organized to build apps or configure business processes

Create simple “filters” and data queries to empower instant customization

Use APIs to easily integrate data from various web services or other applications

Broaden appeal to non-technical users versus targeting traditional developers

The no-code revolution mirrors the computing and software environment prior to Mac OS and Windows. Before GUI interfaces transformed personal computing, mainstream use of