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Ben Halpern for CodeNewbie

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Is Traditional Coding Worthwhile in the Era of Low-Code and No-Code Platforms?

As the popularity of low-code and no-code platforms continues to rise, some are questioning the necessity of investing time in learning traditional coding languages and frameworks. What are your thoughts on this? Have you embraced low-code or no-code platforms, or do you still see value in mastering traditional coding? Share your perspectives!

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Top comments (13)

mistval profile image

I don't think you can really replace "traditional coding" because even in low-code frameworks, when the going gets tough, you need the skills to dig in and write code. Sometimes, the framework might fight against you as you do this, especially if you depart the realm of "how it's supposed to work", which sometimes is necessary.

This is actually true of "frameworks" more generally. Sometimes they are supposed to abstract something away from you, but it doesn't do quite what you need, and you end up having to dig in.

Low-code and no-code frameworks are just force multipliers. It is possible to use a no-code framework and have zero coding skills (people do this with Wordpress for instance), but again, when the going gets tough, if you don't know how to code, your options will be a lot more limited.

darkwiiplayer profile image
𒎏Wii 🏳️‍⚧️

Is it worthwhile to learn a realistic drawing style in an age where a more simplified anime-like style can often draw in just as much of an audience with a lot less effort?

Both questions prescribe a goal that not everyone might share. For coding just as much as for drawing, people have diverse goals and reasons for learning new skills, and plainly dismissing all of them other than serving capitalism is both rude to the individual and toxic to the field.

With that out of the way, for the implied purpose of earning money, is it worthwhile to learn "traditional" programming? Sure, if you have the time to spare.

Let's be honest, low-code and no-code systems will rarely get you all the way to where you want. There will be times when things break, when things need to be extended, clients insisting on non-standard interfaces. In those cases, someone will have to get their hands dirty and either fix or extend the system to make things work.

Being someone who operates these systems when they work normally, but can revert to lower level skills when things break is a lot more useful than being reliant on someone else (read: another employee who needs to be paid) to fix things.

cheetah100 profile image
Peter Harrison

This has the flavour of the weavers complaining about the automated looms. Just like every occupation machines are coming for us. Only instead of last cab off the rank software development, at least as we knew it, we are already in the firing line.

This isn't just about the new hotness replacing the old, it is about entirely new capabilities. It is like comparing the way we did things before computers in the office to how we do it now. I used to handle manual paper files growing up. Today its all digital.

Frankly the way the IT industry failed to learn early lessons around how to build adaptable solutions, and instead building highly coupled complex monstrosities only put a huge honking great target on our back.

There is still a role for coders, someone needs to build the platforms, and there will be the legacy monstrosities for some time yet, but don't count on the bread and butter screen and report building of the past. Low code and no code is coming for you. I know. I'm building it.

fish1 profile image
Jacob Enders

It really depends on the job that needs to get done. At my job, we are forced to use this low code, SQL framework for developing corporate reports. It's great and quick when you need to just do a simple query for some information.

But we often find ourselves writing these extremely complex logical loops to get the software to do what we need. It would actually be simpler to write traditional python, SQL or something.

theaccordance profile image
Joe Mainwaring

For some, they'll be able to succeed without having to invest as deeply in programming languages thanks to the advancement of low-code and no-code tooling, but that's honestly been the case for quite some time.

I learned JavaScript before jQuery was a thing, and now we have even more frameworks like React and Angular - these libraries/frameworks essentially lower the amount of code a developer would otherwise have to write themselves to achieve the same goal. This has enabled many people to become JS developers without necessarily having to learn the same JavaScript fundamentals I had to learn.

Should developers learn the fundamentals I did? Not necessarily if I'm being honest. For those building the libraries/frameworks/tools that enable lower code development - the answer is yes, but for everyone else, it's not a requirement.

fadygrab profile image
Fady GA 😎

I have the perfect answer for that ... it depends 😅
Each has its own use cases and circumstances. Like if you are mainly a business oriented team that needs an app with relatively simple requirements, then the low/no code approach will make more sense.
And if your team has the technical expertise and resources and you need a complex app, then the traditional coding will be more suitable 🤷🏼‍♂️

soulfiremage profile image
Richard Griffiths

It depends how much you want to understand and how many options you'd like to give yourself and future clients.

A low or no code platform alone limits you to what you can both express in, and think of with, a platform. This is crucial.

The more ways you have to think about a problem, the more solutions you can arrive at. Logically, the greater the odds of producing a really good one.

narasingh profile image

Yes, traditional coding is still worthwhile since it provides a higher level of control and flexibility, nevertheless, no code/low code have certain limitations, so, I believe traditional coding cannot be completely abandoned.

aaronmccollum profile image
Aaron McCollum

I’m using Microsoft’s Power Platform for my job at the moment and it’s pretty neat. It’s not very customizable and the “code” used to provide extra logic in Power Apps isn’t fun to use.

I still want to learn “traditional” coding since there will always be a need for folks to know what’s going on under the hood. It will be a way to set myself apart from people who just move a few buttons around and design no code solutions with a GUI. (I don’t mean to take anything away from no-code users, as this method has allowed many more people to get involved in making applications at their work to increase efficiency - that’s a good thing!)

baenencalin profile image
Calin Baenen

Can someone explain what this is?

joeyguerra profile image
Joey Guerra

Visual Code is Low Code.

manchicken profile image
Mike Stemle


chrisburkssn profile image
Chris Burks

Do low-code, no-code troubleshooting and resolving issue tools exit? If not, who is fixing those type of platforms?