Cloud computing has solved a number of software development issues in the past and still continues to do so in the present. It may not be the answer to all the problems, but still, IT developers and managers know that if used properly cloud computing can literally make software less time-consuming. This is particularly true for developing applications on the cloud because it facilitates collaboration, features inherent to cloud with the support of minimal coding and also reusing elements reducing development effort. Moreover, it facilitates quality testing process involved in application and software lifecycle management. It also facilitates application customization making it more user-friendly. Cloud agility and flexibility is such a feature which can reduce development time dramatically. The majority of development tools are hostable on cloud whereas some are developed for cloud delivery.
Levels of Cloud-Based Development
There are various levels of software development on cloud computing. The first level of development tools offers the environment in managed containers. This provides a safe development conducive environment where each developer can work in parallel without the need of an individual server. Moreover, this reduces crosstalk among developers which could be confusing during testing. Developer workspaces must be created in the virtual world and some vendors offer features and collaboration pertaining to project management development. Also, clouds provide DevOps use to allow operations. All of these contribute to faster development.
Another excellent time-saving element in cloud computing is its “feature as a service” APIs. They offer simple as well as complex development features such as relational database management systems and complicated features such as IoT (Internet of Things) functional programming and device management. The components are entirely implemented and easily spotted. Combining a couple of features along with some minimal code can custom create applications which may have required a longer period of time to be developed.
The big shot development companies have incorporated a new set of features into their web-service cloud API repositories. Some of them offer particular features to allow cloud development while others provide a number of APIs and management tools. Artificial intelligence is also provided by these service providers. The cloud improves development efficiency even in spaces where there is no facility to include canned cloud API. Cloud infrastructure and elements combine to bring about an IT model where application can contract and expand by omitting vital components. Component sharing lowers development cost and as a result, facilitate quicker application development.
Microservices always use shared component mechanism. These are atomic levels functionality and easier to use due to their simplicity. It can also be used in an uncomplicated web-REST way. Applying microservices to development can curb around 40% of the time. However, some challenges can be faced by developers using it.
Tricky Application Lifecycle Management
One of the biggest challenges associated with ALM or Application Lifecycle Management is putting up a realistic test setting. Modern applications are designed to be used any time, everywhere and by everyone and testing them using traditional parameters will provide best results. Cloud provides distributed data generation which can let the testers simulate actual production. The “no code” model is the ultimate in fastest development. In this, functionality is assembled utilizing drag-and-drop principles which can be used easily even by non-IT professionals. These are also popularly known as citizen developers. Cloud supports a combination of tools and rich components to achieve this.
Developing software and applications for IT people was not the objective. The objective was to build something for the commoners, business people. Also, the app should be more responsive to reduce overall costs. This has given rise to the concept of shadow IT which offers software as a service and not the end product. Simple programming tools blending with Lambda or similar techniques are aiding in the shadow’s increased presence into basic development.
What is the Future?
Although it has cut down on the time, yet it is unknown whether all the initiatives will blend into a common model. The model referred to will form a variable code platform drawing on both user-developed elements and cloud components for ALM and application assembly. The initial driver for this is the continuous delivery software model. The other one is the shadow IT phenomenon driven by cloud appropriation by line departments. The third is the ever-enriching cloud API repository which is now graduating to entire applications as composable components.
Cloud-based faster development and its impact is actually felt very strongly now. It is considered to have brought a true software revolution in only a short span of time. It is being anticipated that cloud-based programming techniques will recreate the book on application and software development and influence programming for desktop systems as well. The populist IT genre demands Agile development and cloud is delivering exactly that.