As we look ahead following Claris Engage Beyond 2021, the next generation of low- and no-code app development has begun to unfold. Codence is excited to introduce Claris’ latest offering and its incredible value to FileMaker development partners.
Claris is proud to announce their new development tool, designed to extend their existing FileMaker solutions, so that you can augment what you’ve already built and create beautiful, modern apps for web, mobile, and desktop. These apps can run alone or as part of an existing FileMaker application. This new tech stack is built on ReactJS and MongoDB, giving developers bold new abilities to extend their apps. Even better, the tool does the heavy lifting so developers are not required to program these elements directly. To leverage the power of this stack, you do not need to be a React developer or Mongo admin. The result is easy, powerful, and fun web-based authoring.
UI and UX
UI (user interface) and UX (user experience) are the central driving force behind this new offering. In today’s world of app development, it’s clear that no matter how powerful and capable they may be, look and feel matter more than ever. End users have increasingly higher expectations for seamless experiences that flow smoothly and feel intuitive.
Ease of use matters on the backend as well, especially when it comes to getting the apps in front of users in the fastest, most efficient way possible. Desktop app development takes more effort to deploy and can be harder to maintain. With web-based authoring and delivery, initial deployment and subsequent updates are simple to publish and arrive to users immediately.
Scale and Performance
When developing a solution, users need to trust that their app can be extended and adapted as their lines of business grow and change. Their chosen solution needs to scale with their business, without compromising performance. By leveraging these new tools, your users will have increased confidence that what you are building now will be able to grow and perform at scale in sync with their business growth.
When developing this new tool, Claris shares their guiding principles to best serve all users:
- Delightful design –– You spend a lot of time using development tools! Work time is far better spent using tools that are enjoyable, delightful, and fun to build with.
- Progressive discovery –– Early versions of FileMaker were simple, and designed to solve simpler problems. As FileMaker has evolved over the years learning its huge library of tools may seem like a daunting task to new users. Progressive changes are easier to learn, so they are building on what you already know to advance and extend your existing toolset and solutions.
- Encouraging creativity –– Claris believes in tools that are flexible and allow you to always say “Yes!” using FileMaker. With great flexibility can come a major caveat; nothing is prebuilt and you have to build from scratch. The goal is for Claris to do the heavy lifting in the background while making it faster and easier to build creative solutions to unique problems.
The next big question on your mind is surely, “When is this coming?” While Claris has announced that this tool isn’t quite ready, they speculated that its release will be in a matter of months, and they shared their roadmap and plans so that you have a clear view of their approach.
Their primary goal with this new tool and development approach is to build value. Legacy approaches mean building from the ground up and were unable to demonstrate value until the project was complete. This hinders projects and Claris is working on an Agile transformation that allows them to take an iterative approach.
The first of our features to be delivered will expose smaller elements that have strong value so that you can start solving smaller, simpler problems straightaway. They will be iteratively adding more features and functionality so that you can solve deeper, more complex problems. An excellent example of this iterative approach is to imagine a mobility solution that starts with a skateboard, then grows to a push scooter, then a bicycle, a motorcycle, and eventually a car (and beyond).
So, what is Claris’ skateboard? Their first feature allows you to quickly and easily deploy web data collection to external users. This allows easy extension of existing FileMaker solutions to reach out into the web to gather end-user data for backend processing and action.
Why are they starting here? Today’s pain with web-facing data collection is three-fold. First, WebDirect, the current way to reach FileMaker into the web, lacks modern UI/UX and doesn’t scale. Second, in the past this has often required third-party tools, requiring additional licensing and extra moving parts. And third, the option to write custom pages for the web is often time-consuming and wasteful. While not hooked up yet, the goal is to allow these new web-facing apps to link into existing FileMaker solutions to share data directly.
Here’s how this approach is designed to set us up for the future:
- Offers new authoring methods for easy-to-deploy, modern apps that natively support web, mobile, and desktop;
- Meets modern needs to help attract new developers to the Claris community;
- Designed to be delightful and do the heavy lifting so you can focus on creativity and solving your customer’s deepest pain points,
- Rolling out features and functionality in stages of value to incrementally build towards where we are heading.
Claris’ path to the future starts with their new tech stack, giving you modern tools designed to make it simple to create so much additional value for your customers. With an iterative approach, we can give you access sooner rather than later to what we are building so you can start solving simple problems now, progressively build new skills, and grow alongside us into the future.
Learn more about what’s new at Claris and see more from Engage Beyond 2021 here.
Danielle makes things happen, driving opportunities for Codence by facilitating cross-functional marketing, branding, and growth initiatives. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration and Marketing from San Francisco State University. On her time off, she enjoys spending time with her husband, son, and English bulldog. (Danielle is an Independent Contractor working with Codence.)