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Toward Code-Free Business Application Development
March 1997 (vol. 30 no. 3)
pp. 35-43

Conventional wisdom holds that building high-end business applications is unavoidably difficult because applications and the technology for implementing them are complex. Empirical evidence from real projects amply reinforces this conclusion. Building business applications requires technical knowledge about database design, entity relationship or object modeling, GUI design, middleware technology, programming languages, operating systems, prototyping tools, and so on.

Pulling together a development environment and a knowledgeable team capable of tackling a large application can be a major hurdle in starting a new project. It can be argued that spiraling technical complexity makes it difficult to focus on the application's core business problem. Complicated prototyping tools may help with early rapid iteration, but they result in throwaway mock-ups that quickly lose sync with the application as it evolves.

To reach a new level of productivity and quality in application building, we need something better. This article begins with a simple business application and attempts to sketch out what an "ideal" approach to specifying it might be. From this basic example, design and process patterns emerge that allow for the specification of a comprehensive environment that meets these criteria.

Citation:
Eric Wegscheider, "Toward Code-Free Business Application Development," Computer, vol. 30, no. 3, pp. 35-43, March 1997, doi:10.1109/2.573653
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