As one of Mendix's MVP's, I was blown away by what was presented. Mendix 7's features, meeting in person my colleagues from around the globe, and the time spent with Mendix employees that I don't get to see nearly as often as I'd like. I'm not going to recap the show (press releases will take care of that) but rather share some thoughts about what I experienced.
Mendix 7 is positioning itself as the tool to use during this digital disruption to solve 21st century problems: IoT, Machine Learning, Analysis, etc. This is fantastic because it is part of the vision I bought into years ago when I asked to build a practice centered on its use. But one of the things in Mendix 7 that was shown off was their WYSIWYG editor, or web-based modeler.
I'll tell you now that as of this writing, I will probably never use it, at least not in its current form. But that's not the point. This isn't built for me. This is built for my customers and partners. How often are developers bogged down with UI stories about the look, feel, and placement of objects on pages? Mendix has now delivered a tool that allows anyone (yes, you too Mac users) to take ownership of the application and impact that design. This is part of enabling an organization to self-grow. As a consultant, this might sound contrarian to my objectives, but it couldn't be further from the truth. I WANT my customers to be enabled and take ownership of things that they can impact. I WANT them to design simple microflows on the go.
I want to spend my time focused on the needs that they struggle with, such as domain modeling, security, test planning, SCRUM master(ing?)...you get the idea. I'm glad that Mendix is taking steps to commoditize some aspects of the build of an application. I want my staff to be strategic partners, not code monkeys (no offense meant to monkeys).
Besides the other amazing things that Mendix is bringing to the new platform, I was overwhelmed at the number of ideas that people are coming up with to use the application. I admit that I've spent most of my career building business apps, such as pre-processing or post-processing, or CRM/ERP style apps, etc. But I haven't had a chance to build an app that taps into beacons, for example, that alert when a temperature gets too hot. This opens up a whole new world of possibilities, and I can't wait to work on some of these!
I met a lot of great and talented people. The guest speakers were top-notch. I'm already excited for next year. Maybe all of that talk about bringing a show to the US will wear on them enough to make it happen. :) If you have a chance to go, by all means, I look forward to seeing you next year at the event!