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What is “Appification”?

by Mike Nieburg in All Blog Posts, Appification, CAD/CAE, Democratization, Simulation, Uncategorized

Web deployment and application building has begun to germinate some new definitions for old terms, and in some cases spawned brand new ones. Words like “appification,” “webification,” “democratization” and their related verb forms are becoming increasingly added to the software lexicon.

Appification has most often been associated with the rapidly emerging mobile environment (see http://www.igi-global.com/dictionary/appification/50128), where an application (program), is packaged so it can be used on mobile devices (as an installed program or a software-as-a-service, SaaS).

EASA, a leading web app building and deployment tool, takes this one step further, allowing an author to create a custom, fit for purpose GUI or UI for virtually any software program, making it as easy and fool proof as possible for a user, while also fully webifying it – making it accessible and executable from a browser. This makes the app especially useful not only on mobile devices, but just as importantly, on any computer with internet or intranet access. As an aside, it was historically a developer or programmer who would write the software, but as there is no code writing involved when using EASA, we differentiate it by referring to it as “authoring”.

EASA also enables the unique capability to appify not just an individual program (for example, an Excel spreadsheet), but a series of programs that comprise a process or workflow, automating its execution. Thus, while one might execute a CAE program on a desktop by first running a pre-processor, then a solver, and finally a post processor, with EASA a single, intuitive to use app would allow each of these processes to automatically hand off or branch as appropriate, and deliver results in a similarly simplified manner back to the user. The ease of use and ease of access helps to democratize these tools – put them into the hands of a much larger group.

The implications are dramatic. Folks who previously did not have the experience or expertise to run a particular program or set of programs can suddenly tap into the tool(s), set up a problem, run it and view results – and do so from any web browser equipped device, including mobile devices.

Does this all make sense? Best to look at some examples, and the ubiquitous Excel spreadsheet is an excellent one. Excel normally resides on a specific computer and is typically shared by emailing or copying onto portable media or network drive. As an app, it is launched by anyone who is authorized to access a particular URL – via a web browser. An example of an appified spreadsheet: Appification of Excel. EASA, by the way, eliminates a whole host of dangers associated with using Excel – see the link in the next section.

Interested in more information?

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