The issue has (mostly) never been with the idea of low-code, but more with the timing. Mostly platform maturity, but also business landscape.
Momentum for app building tools has picked up again with a rise of so-called low-code platforms.
The answer is in the platform. Rather than offering an interface that simply obscures the actual code generating an app, the new generation of low-code tools are self-contained (yet extensible) platforms that enable people to build within an environment that's already hospitable to all the unseen components of the app. That eliminates the need to update the platforms or apps due to changes in the code base or infrastructure. In fact, most modern low-code platforms are delivered via the web, meaning users don't have to worry about any updates at all.
The cloud platform approach also empowers these tools to provide far more security and reliability than ever before â€” making it much easier for organizations to deploy with the confidence that they have the right controls in place to meet their security and compliance standards. If the platform itself offers high-level security and compliance controls, the path to deploying platform apps securely is much shorter.
Finally, the user base for these platforms has matured in the past decade. This has given rise to best practices, a thriving ecosystem of partners and app builders, and a better understanding overall of the capabilities of each platform.
Overall, we've gone from so-called fourth-generation programming languages (4GL), computer-assisted software engineering (CASE) tools, and early rapid application development (RAD) tools to Business Process Management (BPM) platforms, and now low-code and no-code.
At this stage, it seems like low-code and no-code can coexist. As low-code helps developers be more productive and no-code helps non-developers become developers. Both of these have a time and place.
However, so far, low-code platforms appear to be delivering much greater value to businesses.
James Martin dreamed of developing software without software developers. Ironically, app building tools are mostly empowering developers to spend less writing code and more time creating applications.