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Mlab – how we developed a component based app builder for non-developers
by Arild Bergh (Senior Researcher) & Cecilie Jackbo Gran (Senior Engineer). Sinett 3.0 programme at Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI)
Following the disruptive change from desktop to mobile computing there is a large, pent up demand for custom/internal apps in many large organisations. A key problem for these organisations is the clash between the need for advanced apps and the possibilities for non-developers internally in the organisation to create such apps. Complex apps requires professional programmers (increasing time and cost) whereas current non-developer tools usually result in rather basic apps.
To allow non-developers to create advanced apps the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment developed an app builder called Mlab based on re-usable components. The goal was that anyone who knew how to use PowerPoint could create advanced apps through the use of self-contained, interactive components without any programming knowledge.
This presentation will discuss how HTML5/JS/CSS enabled the development of the extensible Mlab framework through components. In particular we will examine how our solutions make both the development (by programmers) and use (by app creators) of components quick and simple without sacrificing power. Mlab was initially created for the Norwegian Defence but will soon be generally available.
Dealing with unexpected exceptions on the server side is something we've all done for ages. Now it's time to apply the same quality goals and monitoring to our JS codebase. This is especially important for large complex web or mobile applications where the front-end usually contains 100k+ lines of code. I'll demonstrate various powerful monitoring techniques and tricks that we are using ourselves at Bryntum.