Sunday, September 11, 2016

Why App Development is Going Micro

This post was also published on TechCrunch.

Application development has long been fraught with peril: Projects become bloated, expensive and never ship. Implementation technologies tend to match the bloat, ranging from Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) to Business Process Management (BPM). As Redpoint’s Tomasz Tunguz recently pointed out, growth in Software-as-a-Service is slowing, and a next generation of applications will weave new workflows across existing applications in novel ways

The “micro wave” of services, apps and flows

The “micro” trend in application development is focused on delivering bottoms-up, simple solutions to complex problems. Micro services can easily integrate multiple systems, micro apps can present them as easy-to-consume user interfaces and micro flows allow users to simply complete tasks across systems. This “micro wave” triad of services, apps and flows offers a new way to weave existing systems in novel, organic ways in order to deliver solutions immediately.

Micro services

Interoperability between apps has long been the holy grail of application development. Heavyweight, top-down architectures such as CORBA/IIOP in the 1990s evolved into SOA in the 2000s. Implementing a SOA required enterprise-wide mandates and coordination. Payload standards such as SOAP are heavyweight and fraught with incompatibilities, especially at the authentication layer.

A few companies such as GE have had the discipline to implement a SOA, but for most enterprises, SOA projects have failed to gain widespread adoption. Even after success, the constant divestitures and acquisitions of the corporate world keep SOAs a moving target.

Over the past few years, micro services have become vogue. Micro services are atomic, self-contained services that perform a single operation on a back-end system, such as a retrieving a customer record. The most common interface to a micro service is the well-known and very straightforward JSON/REST/HTTPS paradigm. Authentication is also straightforward and is typically easy-to-use API keys.

The beauty of micro services is that they are incredibly easy to create, deploy and share. New and existing applications can easily call numerous external and internal micro services. Naysayers correctly point out the micro services can too easily propagate like mushrooms, fail to scale and are hard to share and discover. However, these are problems that should be corralled by policy within an enterprise, rather than heavy-handed technology.

Making it easy for apps to organically communicate with each other has spawned a new generation of app creation and delivery that has made it far easier for both enterprises and software vendors to accelerate a new generation of applications.

Micro apps

Since the introduction of iOS and Android app stores in 2008, mobile apps have taken over as many consumers’ primary interface to computing. With the plethora of apps available, it is so difficult to attract consumers to install an app on their device and keep using it. It is therefore very common for vendors to pile a bunch of features into their apps so they can retain existing users with new functionality, as well as attract more users. As a result, native apps are becoming increasingly bloated and hard to navigate.

A new wave of “micro apps” is emerging that are intelligent and context-aware. Platforms supporting micro apps range from interactive Slack and Facebook Messenger bots to Google’s interactive answer boxes, such as weather and flights. These micro apps are typically single purpose and use a combination of straightforward user interfaces and context.

Facebook Messenger’s micro apps are composed of rich bubbles and menus

Micro apps are based on HTML and load dynamically, typically bypassing app stores and loading directly into existing communication tools like Slack and Facebook Messenger. There is definitely pushback to the natural language aspect of “bots.” However, the ability to quickly load interactive micro apps directly into messengers and even search results is quickly gaining traction. Facebook Messenger, in particular, is quickly integrating new features, such as dynamic menus and interactive units, which can do anything, from helping you buy a shirt to ordering a pizza.

Slack’s director of developer relations, Amit Shevat, sums up micro apps very well: “they must do one thing really well.”

Micro flows

Business Process Management (BPM) tools help organizations implement top-down automation of business processes. They are typically very expensive and take a long time to deploy. BPM tools manage long-lived workflows requiring a combination of human interaction and machine-to-machine transfers.

The first foray into micro flows were by companies like IFTTT and Zapier, which move data from one machine to another — for example, moving a Salesforce closed deal to Zendesk. While these services are popular, they have hit an upper bound in traction and revenue. New companies such as Workato are extending machine-to-machine workflows between SaaS systems, but they are very similar in complexity to BPM solutions, with a domain-specific language suited for programmers.

A micro flow in Slack

The new potential for micro flows is in the arena of human-to-machine interaction. Now that messenger platforms like Slack and Skype provide rich, interactive HTML that lets users interact with back-end systems, there is an opportunity to reinvent how users interact with enterprise software.

With micro flows, users can bypass complex and unwieldy legacy systems to perform simple actions, such as approvals. One of the biggest complaints of modern workers, particularly younger workers, is the difficulty interacting with legacy IT systems that have not been upgraded in years. Much like Generation X workers wondering why there were so many typewriters around, millennials are perplexed by the unnecessarily complicated and antiquated systems at most Global 2000 companies.

Even executives and managers can benefit from micro flows for the multitude of approvals that generally require logging into systems they only occasionally use. Many companies have multiple systems for functions such as expenses. Although IT may have a long-term plan to consolidate systems, micro flows allow executives to interact easily with multiple systems through a single interface.

Because micro flows typically require some type of interaction with a user, they can leverage notification features in mobile devices and messengers. Such simple, easy-to-use micro flows make it easy to fully integrate contributors into a more macro workflow.

Onward to a “micro wave” future

The combination of micro services, micro apps and micro flows build on each other to deliver a new paradigm for delivering the next generation of apps. Hopefully we can learn from the lessons of the past and not try to “grow up” the micro revolution.


Packers And Movers Mumbai said...

Excellent Post...I must thank you for this informative news....This is my first time go to see at here and i am really pleassant to read
all at one place. Local Packers and Movers Mumbai list, Cheap Packers Movers Mumbai Charges, Affordable, Best Household Shifting Mumbai @ Packers and Movers Mumbai

Infokesehatanid said...

Thank you for the information you present to me , I was very lucky to find you wrote this . Because it is new to my knowledge Cara Menghilangkan Sakit Haid Hopefully you can write more about things like this . I strongly agree with your phrase up there . Visit me at Penyebab Sakit Haid or could also probably visit my other social media thanks for the information
Tips Mengatasi Sakit Haid wish you long life and can continue to Faktor Penyebab Sakit Haid write ya !

raffa syahdika said...

nice post, I very appreciate that.
If you have a problem we come with a recommendation for us, please visit my website
Obat Kuat Kuat Pria Anti Ejakulisi Dini Tahan Lama 1 Jam Non-Stop
Obat Kuat Semprot spray 100% ampuh

Nathan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anil Gupta said...

Thanks for the information. Helped us to convince most on how this process works and what they could achieve by following these guidelines
Bangalore Web Designing Company, Web Development Company Bangalore

Prasanth said...

A very well-written post. I read and liked the post and have also bookmarked you. All the best for future endeavors. Getting some solution regarding.
UI Design Company Bangalore, Web Application Development Services in Bangalore

Apporio said...

It feels good to see how mobile applications have created huge impact on our lives. I would like to share a article that i found while scrolling through my newsfeed.

Happy reading.

Abhishek Mohan said...

As a website design company Web India Market offer a full-circle approach in responsive website designing and web development services. Our website designing services covers Strategic Planning, Business Intelligence, Creative Application Development, Digital Marketing, SEO services and e-commerce solutions.

Nathan said...

I appreciate this post – I think it brings out a lot of truths within our immediate and near future. Although this specific topic isn’t in my realm of expertise, I’ve personally used a few services you mentioned within this post, including IFTTT and Zapier. I would definitely agree that these types of micro services are exceptionally easy to use, deploy and share, even from the perspective of rookie programmers.

Nathan @ Emyoli

Sagacity Software said...

Thank you for sharing such a great information.
Application Development Solution
Application Development Consulting Company

Agaricpro Backlink said...

Good Idea this blog is verry nice, Thanks for information and good Site and The best Author
Obat Hernia Anak
Obat Hidrokel Anak
Cara Menyembuhkan Hidrokel
Baja Ringan Tangerang
Penjual Baja Ringan di Tangerang
Puisi : Kurikulum Kelas Tiga
Puisi : Catatan Hitam (Untuk Negeri)
60 Kata-Kata Mutiara Gusmus

Agaricpro Backlink said...

Nicely, Good Site. Thanks for Post this blog is Verry Good.
Obat Hernia
Cara Mengobati Buah Zakar Besar Sebelah
Obat Hidrokel
Obat Herbal Hernia
Obat Turun Berok
Obat Hernia Bayi

Sonali Taral said...

Nice Post..!
Application Maintenance Support Service

Risma Haryawanti said...

Nice your artcle
Gejala-gejala Penyakit Batu Ginjal
Obat Alami Penyakit Batu Ginjal
Cara Mengobati Penyakit Batu Ginjal
Jual Obat Herbal

Viagra said...

thank you
Obat Kuat
Obat Viagra
Obat Kuat Viagra
Viagra Asli
Viagra Usa

Jual Jelly Gamat Qnc said...

Terimakasih info yang sangat bermanfaat.
Pengobatan Penyakit Asma Terbaik

Sabi Singh said...

Packers and Movers Chandigarh - Hire trusted and affordable movers and packers in Chandigarh at doorstep delivery with best quality packing for your home shifting, office relocation, car carriers, bike transportation services within Chandigarh locality, outside Chandigarh city and international movers from Chandigarh.

Packers and Movers Chandigarh
Packers and Movers Mohali
Packers and Movers Panchkula
Packers and Movers Ludhiana
Packers and Movers Jalandhar
Packers and Movers Amritsar
Packers and Movers Patiala
Packers and Movers Zirakpur

carpoolers said...

Excellent Post...I must thank you for this informative news....This is my first time go to see at here and i am really pleasant to read
all at one place. Housekeeping services companies list, professional housekeeping services in Mumbai, Affordable, Best housekeeping services in Mumbai @ housekeeping services in Mumbai

carpoolers said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Indian Packers and Movers said...

Packers and movers in Mumbai, Packers and movers in dadar, Packers and movers in thane, Packers and movers in panvel, Packers and movers in kamothe

Indian Packers and Movers said...

Are you the one residing in Mumbai and planning to relocate? The first thing runs in your mind is to find a perfect mover. You can find several Packers and Movers in Mumbai. But the problem is to select one Relocation Services in Mumbai who really understands the worth of money and recognize the value of people. If you are in search of such transporters Mumbai, your search ends at the door steps of Indian Packers And Movers Mumbai licensed, insured and full service Packers and Movers in Mumbai.

Indian Packers and Movers said...

Indian Packers and Movers in Mumbai is the top quality packers and movers for household goods, office furniture/glass and local home shifting, luxury car and bike transportation services at affordable price in Mumbai.
Packers and movers in Mumbai, Packers and movers in jogeshwari, Packers and movers in kharghar, Packers and movers in Dombivli

Indian Packers and Movers said...

Our services is widely spread across Mumbai. We are one of the most safe and reliable Packers and Movers in Mumbai because we take pride in delivering the best of house shifting services, office shifting services at a most affordable charges. If you need a trustworthy Packers and Movers in Mumbai who can safely shift your household items which is easy on your pockets, we are always ready to serve you.

Indian Packers and Movers said...

Indian Packers and Movers in Mumbai is one of the leading relocation companies in Mumbai. We are committed to provide the best relocation services to our clients.
Packers and movers in Mumbai

Karan Singh said...

New Year Pics 2019
Happy New Year 2019 Greetings for Friends

Charu Infotech said...

Excellent Post...I must thank you for this informative news....This is my first time go to see at here and i am really pleasant to read
all at one place. Housekeeping services companies list, professional housekeeping services in Mumbai, Affordable, Best housekeeping services in Mumbai @ housekeeping services in Mumbai

i4 consulting said...

Thanks admin for nice peace of post i love to read this blog every time. php Website development in USA

Projector India said...

Great Blog I Ever Read this is one of the best resource I really want to tell you that you must read it as it contents very usefull information Which can help you in future

Projector India said...

cctv camera dealers in thane
cctv camera installation in mumbai
cctv camera installation in thane
cctv camera dealers in navi mumbai
cctv camera dealers in mumbai

Projector India said...

tik tok marathi bhau kadam | tik tok marathi comedy video bhau kadam | tik tok musically marathi comedy bhau kadam | tik tok bhau kadam videos | tik tok bhau kadam special | tik tok musically bhau kadam |