What if in the near future anyone could create software
This summer, Challenges offers you a leap into an imaginary future. We publish, within the framework of our series on the scenarios of rupture, projections, in republished summarized version, carried out by the Red Team, a team of science fiction writers assembled by the Defense Innovation Agency. Its mission: to publish two scenarios a year to confront armies with extreme scenarios. But also scenarios imagined by us or the lines of thought of The Economist. Like this projection by The Economist. Good reading!
In 2018, a field technician working for Australian telecom company Telstra built an app that unified 70 messaging systems reporting phone line issues. While he knew nothing about coding! The interface looks like a catch-all with, on the home page, 150 buttons and a continuous local information banner – the equivalent of an airplane cockpit on an app, Charles mischievously points out Microsoft’s Lamanna, supervisor of the software giant’s Power Apps platform that made possible the birth of the app, which is a hit. Now 1,300 other Telstra employees use it, saving $12 million a year.
Professional developers may laugh at the technician’s do-it-yourself app, the trend it represents is no joke. Since well before 2017, when Chris Wanstrath, co-founder of collaborative coding site GitHub, declared that “the future of coding is no coding”, so-called low code/no code (LC/ NC) have multiplied. With them, anyone can write software using simple drag-and-drop visual interfaces (no code) or through minimal coding (low code). The computer then translates the instructions into pre-written or automatically generated code, which then performs the tasks.
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