Using his blog commentary slot on analyst firm Forrester's website, application development specialist Mike Gualtieri discussed what he calls the three ‘megatrends' driving software programming in the current age.
Citing ice hockey player Wayne Gretzky's comment, "I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been," Gualtieri defines development speed, user experiences, and mobility as three areas to focus on.
Megatrend 1: Get faster — Gualtieri suggests that the "do more with less" mentality brought on by the global economic recession means that application development professionals now need to deliver and change applications faster.
"The industrialization of application development has failed. Scrap it. You must get faster, and that means changing your process, changing your technology, and changing your organization. Software development is more akin to making a movie than to making widgets on an assembly line," said Gualtieri.
Megatrend 2: Design perfect user experiences — Today's rapid consumer mentality has lead many to argue that user experience is the most important (or at least the most 'pertinent') element of software development.
"You can do an exceptional job on project management, requirements gathering, architecture, data management, testing, and coding, but if the user experience is poor, your results will be mediocre — or even a complete failure," said Gualtieri.
Megatrend 3: Do mobile — It's hard (and perhaps foolish) to ignore the current impact of smartphones and tablets on software application development. Indeed, Gualtieri asserts that mobile is not just another channel; it is "the" channel.
Gualtieri writes in closing, "If you think mobile app design is about choosing the best development tools and designing for a smaller screen size, guess again. Sure, the platform is important, but great mobile user experiences don't happen just because you chose the best development tools. To deliver apps your users will i>love, you must design a user experience that is useful, usable, and desirable in a mobile context of location, locomotion, immediacy, intimacy, and device."