6 Ways Development Field Will Evolve in 2020

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This is the last article in the Seven Major Cloud Native Trends for 2020 Series

Looking ahead to 2020, we believe that cloud native and intelligence will become the top two features of next-generation R&D platforms. They can further lower the difficulty of adopting complex technologies and unleashing productivity through tools. When all complexity is offloaded to the cloud, we will recapture the efficiency we had when developing standalone programs 10 years ago. As we enter the next decade, we believe the application development field will evolve in the following ways in 2020:

Evolution from Web IDE to Cloud Native IDE

In addition to VS Code, Theia continues to evolve, and the Theia-based gitpod.io is especially popular at the moment. By integrating multiple gitpod buttons on pages such as GitHub README, this product allows you to experience the process from programming to preview with one click.

On the other hand, the existing web IDE solutions of large companies also need to embrace the community. For example, Facebook completely switched from its in-house Nuclide to VS Code. However, both Amazon Cloud9 and Google’s recently released Cider must support the VS Code plug-in system if they are to be further commercialized.

The move from local IDEs to web IDEs reminds us of the switch from personal computers (PCs) to mobile terminals. Although it is still difficult for mobile terminals to provide the same experience as professional tools on a PC, the leading position of mobile terminals is already indisputable.

Web IDEs have the inherent advantages of out-of-the-box, consistent, and controllable environments and can be seamlessly integrated with other web services. In addition to closing the gap with the end-to-end functions of local IDEs, vendors can also combine distributed compilation and construction, centralized code warehouses, massive code index analysis, and cloud collaboration to provide true cloud native IDEs.

Tools > Platforms > Standards

JetBrains, which started with the IntelliJ tool, is no longer satisfied with being only an IDE. This year, it launched Space to build an all-in-one R&D team platform. Atlassian, which started with the project management tool Jira, has always been driven by both in-house products and acquisitions. This year, through an acquisition, Jira Align was added to the company’s own R&D platform.

On its website, the rising star Sourcegraph claims to be “the new standard developer platform”. Whether it is a shift to the right based on Dev tools or to the left based on Ops tools, the tools of previous years have grown into one-stop DevOps or DevSecOps platforms.

Then, can universal standards be developed based on these platforms? For example, in the CI field, can we unify CI pipeline definitions, such as CircleCI, GitLab, and GitHub Actions? Can we develop a set of workflow standards to allow seamless migration between AWS Step Functions, Argo, and Teton?

At a higher level of abstraction, can standards such as Open Application Model (OAM) really build a bridge from the business architecture to the infrastructure? Although current R&D platforms are already divided into different areas under the direction of different people, given the cloud native and standards-first approach, we still expect cloud native standards that are closer to the business layer to chain the entire R&D platform together.

Developer Tools Will Transition from Local Work to Cloud Collaboration

More Cloud Native R&D Platforms Will Emerge

However, enterprises face many challenges when adopting new technologies, such as the complex construction of open source software, black-screen interaction design, lack of R&D management methods, and lack of enterprise permission management capabilities. Therefore, many software providers have developed management platforms based on the cloud native technology system, such as QingCloud, Rancher, and Alibaba Cloud Container Service. Apsara DevOps, a leading cloud-based R&D collaboration platform, is also actively integrating CICD tools, test environment management methods, application O&M concepts, DevOps collaboration methodology, and other technologies with cloud native technologies. It provides enterprises with new technical solutions that are ready to go out-of-the-box.

The Era of Data and Intelligent Tools Will Arrive

We have observed that, in the past year, AWS, Microsoft, Facebook, eBay, and other vendors have been actively deploying intelligent tools, moving from traditional code-based intelligent tools to service-based intelligent tools. For example, CodeGuru, which was recently released by AWS, is a machine learning service for automatic code review and performance optimization recommendations. It identifies the code lines that most affect program performance and provides specific suggestions to correct or improve the code. This is an intelligent tool that combines code big data and runtime service big data.

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Realizing the Business Value of New Technology in 2020

From the perspective of the market, there are still many enterprises in traditional industries that use physical machines or virtual machines. Due to the status of their assets, it is difficult for them to move their core businesses to cloud native and realize the great value of the new technologies. Over the years, enterprises that have already entered the container era have continuously invested a lot of resources in software asset construction. At the functional level, they have already established software assets equivalent to cloud native, and therefore will not shortly transform their way of using software assets from self-building to cloud native. Despite, this is the normal posture of the market before new technologies are popularized. Industry customers are changing from both ends. Today, we are gradually reaching a consensus on the concept of cloud native.

As we enter the new decade, cloud native practitioners should strengthen their understanding and insight into the value of new technologies and, with cool heads, set to work building the powerful and stable basic capabilities of cloud native. At the same time, it is necessary to realize the business value of new technologies in the right way and at the right time and to accelerate the market’s acceptance of new technologies through more customer success stories. This way, your achievements will be more quickly recognized by the market and you can create industry trends and make contributions to the development of cloud computing.

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