Hopes & concerns for Creo

  1. last year

    steveharman

    18 Oct 2016 User since 2016

    To my mind the single most impressive thing about Creo (so far) is the design experience. The "Everything is an object" concept is fantastic, the data-binding tool for wiring-up API data is certainly one of the best out there and....Creo even supports Sketch importing. What's not to love?

    Well, hopefully nothing - but I have my concerns.

    The 'rapid app development' and 'low code' space is already crowded and getting more so each day. I'm not talking about the hundreds of 'get your app running in 5 minutes with our simple RSS building blocks' - I mean NativeScript, Ionic, Appery, Screendy, Appgyver, Appcelerator...all offer highly visual tools for doing what Creo hopes to achieve. This week another one was announced in the guise of ReactStudio and there are bound to be many others I've missed.

    These tools can be run on Mac, Windows & Linux. Creo is just Mac (which is perfectly fine by me, but....) They are also based on existing web technologies (JS, TS, React, Angular, nodeJS...) which from a development point of view means using existing, transferrable skills. Also they can draw upon hundreds of thousands (!) of existing free & commercial modules via npm, Github, PhoneGap....to easily add app functionality without having to develop from scratch. I have yet to read an answer to my other post asking about any module support in Creo.

    So there you go - in my humble opinion Creo offers a best-in-class design experience with effective API binding - two things that are critical to any modern mobile app dev tool. But do we really need another new coding framework (Gravity)? What is really that wrong with Typescript or JavaScript that the world already knows? And how attractive is a tool going to be if it can't leverage the vast array of existing commercial and free code modules that the world is used to calling on?

    Genuinely excited about the upcoming b5 release but again, in my opinion, Creo needs to embrace existing open technologies in order to succeed, not try re-inventing wheels which already spin perfectly well for 99% of the planet. We'll see.

    Steve

  2. marco

    20 Oct 2016 Administrator User since 2016

    @steveharman thanks a lot for your post, I really appreciate your analysis and your honesty.

    You are probably right, the world does not need another coding framework but it definitely needs a better coding framework. Today developers do not really develop anything, they just assemble existing piece of code and this is perfectly fine some time but with Creo we would like to develop a complete new platform.

    The Creo project is a big risk that required tremendous resources so far and what you can see today is probably 10% of what we would like to do with the technology we developed. We really don't want to re-invent the wheel or go to the opposite direction of the modern web technology, we just would like to create a better way to develop modern software.

    Just give us some more time in order to be able to prove that even a small team can do very big things with passion and dedication.

    Thanks a lot.
    Marco

  3. steveharman

    24 Oct 2016 User since 2016

    I think you're absolutely right @marco - the world does need something better, but in all honesty I can't remember any dev I've worked with actually saying "I wish there was something better than 'x' ". We all encounter frustrations with languages and frameworks but find ways to work around them. The first questions usually asked when assessing a new product are "can I re-use skills I already have with this?" and "how do I extend it if I wanted to do....".

    No matter how much better any framework thinks it is (and let's face it every new framework believes it's better than the last) will have issues that need to be worked around, and that task is made all the easier if it's a known quantity, backed up by a global userbase and support from the likes of StackOverflow and other large developer communities.

    Let's hope Creo achieves the traction it needs to get to that stage rather being passed over by people in favour of languages backed by FaceBook (React), Google (Angular) and Microsoft (TypeScript). That's one hell of a mountain for any team to climb. Personally I'd have borrowed a helicopter from one of those guys and given myself a fighting chance.

    Very best of luck - you've made an exceptional development tool, I just wish it was based on one of the huge open ecosystems that everyone knew and could leverage, out-of-the-box. Then you'd have a game-changer.

    Kind Regards,

    Steve

  4. marco

    24 Oct 2016 Administrator User since 2016

    @steveharman I couldn't agree more.
    I am sure that the perfect framework does not exist and each one has its pros and cons.
    We should really have a call and talk a bit more about these topics.

    Thanks a lot for your time,
    Marco

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