Why Low-Code is Better

Stop coding in High-Code when it can be done in Low-Code

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There are two common reasons why new languages come about. They provide a feature missing in the existing programming languages, or it is a tool that is easier to learn and use. The latter often functions like a swiss army knife with each iteration including more and more tools. The journey of low-code is like a swiss army knife, the perfect tool for the Citizen Developer.

A Typical Coding Evolution

Every decade seems to introduce something that simplifies coding. For me, in college, it was Python. A classmate was excited about this new programming language that was all about simplicity and readability, especially with its indentation-based syntax. It seemed too simple at first. Yet, over time, Python became a staple in my programming toolbox.

During this time in our education, our coursework was filled with languages like C++, which felt distant from the future of programming we imagined. We joked about "outdated" languages, not yet realizing the breadth of what programming could encompass.

After finishing college in 2010, I started working during the tail end of the housing crisis in the U.S. My first role was as a Controls System Integrator at Logical System Inc., where I was introduced to programming PLCs with Ladder Logic. Despite my initial reservations—viewing it as barely a programming language—this experience was my first step towards appreciating the diversity and utility of programming languages beyond the conventional.

Later on in my career, I worked as a Corporate Automation and Controls Engineer where I worked on and enforced standards for partner System Integrators and OEMs. One of these important standards was making sure applications written in the control process were written in Ladder Logic within the PLCs. There were exceptions, of course, but the rule was to apply a visually appealing coding language, Ladder Logic, over a text-like language often called Structured Text.

Programming Languages as Specialized Tools

Programming languages are typically optimized for certain tasks. For instance, Matlab and R excel in complex numerical computations thanks to their extensive libraries designed specifically for mathematical operations. While Python might not replace Matlab or R for their core functionalities, it can broaden the applicability of numerical analyses into various other contexts. In another example, VB.net is the go-to for standalone applications in Windows environments. However, for applications that need to run across different operating systems (excluding web applications), Java might be a better choice due to its platform independence. Each programming language has its niche, along with inherent complexities and constraints.

There are situations, however, where the specific strengths of a programming language become less critical. In cases where the application is straightforward, the choice of language might simply come down to personal preference or familiarity. But an important consideration arises when thinking about the future of the project: "Will someone else need to edit or view this code later?" If the answer is yes, and especially if the project aims to involve citizen developers, opting for a low-code solution becomes highly advantageous. Low-code platforms are designed with accessibility in mind, making them ideal for projects that benefit from collaboration and ease of maintenance.

The Purpose of Citizen Development

The idea behind Citizen Development is simple, make programming accessible to more people. This is what low-code platforms aim to do. They lower the entry barrier, making programming more inclusive. Insisting on complex, traditional programming languages when there are simpler, equally powerful alternatives seems counterproductive. We should be looking towards making programming more accessible to everyone.

If we want to drive meaningful change within our organizations, embracing tools that broaden participation is key. The aim of adopting new standards and tools is to simplify, not complicate. It's about finding better, more accessible ways to work that can accommodate a wider range of skill sets.


This discussion isn't about the mechanics of coding, it's about opening up the field to more diverse contributions. Low-code platforms represent a step towards a more inclusive, collaborative future in technology. By lowering barriers to entry, we're not just simplifying coding, we're inviting a broader community to engage, innovate, and drive progress. I look forward to seeing how we can all contribute to this evolving landscape.

How FlowFuse Helps

Our goal here at FlowFuse is to keep expanding on the Swiss army knife, Node-RED. We strive to elevate Node-RED for professionals by providing the tools needed to deploy Node-RED in a safe and secure way. For example by default, the editor for Node-RED is protected using your FlowFuse user credentials. You can also use SSO to further protect your user accounts and give access to Node-RED to your team members. All traffic to FlowFuse and your Node-RED instances is protected by HTTPS. FlowFuse has set up the domain name and manages the certificates so you can spend time on your flows rather than configuring security.

We believe that Low-Code is the future and strive to make Citizen Development a reality. To learn more schedule a call with one of our experts.

Written By:

OT Data & Community Strategist

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