The Latest Trends in Software Development And How They Are Changing The Industry
As technology evolves astonishingly, software development undergoes groundbreaking transformations that will reshape the industry as we know it. From SIMULA 67, the first object-oriented programming language, to quantum computing, the latest trends promise to unlock unprecedented possibilities in the software industry.
Imagine a future where software development becomes a harmonious collaboration between human ingenuity and the capabilities of artificial intelligence — the final result might be highly sophisticated software systems, pushing the boundaries of human innovation and problem-solving to new heights. Envision coding languages that adapt and evolve, empowering developers to build complex applications faster than ever before.
In this article, we will explore the latest trends in software development that are set to disrupt the status quo and ignite a new era of innovation.
The Rise of Intelligent Software: AI and ML
Before we get to the software trends and techniques, let’s start with the basics. The computer scientist John McCarthy is regarded as the father of artificial intelligence (AI). In 1955 he coined the term AI and wrote LISP, one of the first AI programming languages ever.
AI involves creating machines that can perform tasks requiring human intelligence, such as decision-making and problem-solving. ML (machine learning), a subset of AI, focuses on developing algorithms that enable machines to recognize patterns, make predictions, and adapt based on past experiences.
AI and ML automate tasks, enhance user interfaces, optimize resource allocation, and provide personalized experiences. ML algorithms analyze data, extract insights, and drive AI applications in various domains like healthcare, finance, and customer service. Using these tools, developers can build more sophisticated and efficient solutions that adapt, learn, and provide value to users. These technologies revolutionized software development, empowering machines to exhibit intelligent behavior and enhance human capabilities.
Since 1955, through the combined efforts of scientists and software developers, AI has come a long way. One of the latest Forrester’s researches predicts it’s 10% of worldwide code and tests that will soon be written by an AI-based tool, and AI will become embedded in more aspects of the software development lifecycle.
Below, you can see a few examples of how widespread AI applications are in different fields apart from software development and what cutting-edge advancements do they offer:
- Healthcare. AI-powered diagnostic systems that can analyze medical images, such as X-rays or MRIs, assist doctors in detecting diseases or abnormalities more accurately and efficiently.
- Finance. AI algorithms are used for fraud detection, analyzing patterns and anomalies in financial transactions to identify potential fraudulent activities and prevent financial losses.
- Transportation. Self-driving cars utilize AI algorithms to navigate roads, detect obstacles, and make real-time decisions to ensure safe and efficient transportation.
- Manufacturing. AI-enabled robots and automation systems optimize production processes, perform quality control, and enhance efficiency by reducing errors that occur due to human factors.
- Retail. AI-powered tools analyze customer preferences and behavior to personalize product recommendations, forecast demand, and enhance inventory management.
- Agriculture. AI-based systems that leverage satellite imagery, weather data, and sensor inputs to optimize irrigation, monitor crop health, and enhance agricultural practices, leading to improved yields and sustainable farming.
- Education. AI-powered adaptive learning platforms that tailor educational content and assessments based on individual student needs, enabling personalized and effective learning experiences.
- Energy. AI algorithms are used in energy grid management to optimize energy distribution, predict demand, and enable efficient resource utilization, reducing costs and environmental impact.
AI and ML facilitate forward-thinking approaches in software development as they enable intelligent automation, facilitate data-driven decision-making, and unlock the potential for innovative solutions to complex problems.
Connecting the Digital Dots: Internet of Things (IoT) and Software Development
Based on state-of-the-art technology, the Internet of Things (IoT) enables physical and virtual objects to be globally networked. In simple words, an IoT solution is a system of physical devices (so-called “things”) that are interconnected to exchange and analyze data in real time via the Internet. IoT transforms how technologies are applied in many industries, opening new horizons created through the merger of software development and routine workflow.
We can break the purposes of how IoT is applied in different industries into four categories: interoperability, security, data management, and user experience (UX).
- Interoperability. To ensure seamless integration and data processing among varying manufacturers and operating systems, diverse IoT devices are developed with standardized communication protocols in mind. This enables efficient collaboration among devices, similar to a smart home system.
- Security. To safeguard against potential cyber-attacks, IoT devices are fortified with robust security measures, such as secure programming practices, encryption, access controls, and regular software updates. For example, securing a connected electronic device might be necessary to prevent unauthorized access or protect the home network.
- Data management. IoT devices generate vast amounts of data that must be managed and analyzed, such as in a fleet management system for delivery vehicles. This analysis provides insights to optimize operations and maintenance requirements.
- User experience (UX). As IoT devices increasingly integrate into everyday life, users demand seamless usability and valuable software functionalities. Consequently, IoT boosts user-centric software development in many industries to create intuitive and impactful interactions, exemplified by product design considerations.
IoT generally enables more efficient execution of processes in everyday life, as well as disruptive innovations in different industries. The scope of IoT applications development includes the following examples:
- Sensor networks are deployed in smart cities to monitor traffic flow and optimize traffic signals based on real-time data, reducing congestion and improving transportation efficiency.
- Digital signal processors (DSP) are used in noise-canceling headphones to process incoming audio signals and produce anti-noise signals, reducing background noise and enhancing sound quality for the user.
- Microcontroller programming is employed in home automation systems, where microcontrollers are programmed to control lighting, heating, and other appliances based on user preferences or environmental conditions.
- Mobile apps for wearables enable users of fitness trackers like Apple Watch or Fitbit to monitor their heart rate, sleep patterns, and daily physical activity, encouraging users to stay active and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
- Contactless payment solutions are used in public transportation systems, where commuters can use contactless cards or mobile wallets to pay for their fares, providing a convenient and seamless travel experience.
- Household appliances like smart thermostats can be controlled remotely via mobile apps, allowing homeowners to adjust temperature settings and save energy while they are away from home.
- Power grids utilize AI algorithms to analyze energy consumption patterns and optimize energy distribution, ensuring a stable power supply and preventing blackouts during peak demand periods.
- Medical devices equipped with AI, such as AI-powered imaging systems, assist radiologists in identifying and diagnosing diseases like tumors or fractures more accurately and efficiently, leading to improved patient care and outcomes.
Lightpoint offers IoT development services, so get in touch with us to skyrocket your project in a rapidly evolving technology landscape with industry-proven and comprehensive support.
Beyond Cryptocurrency: Unveiling the Potential of Blockchain in Software Development
Blockchain technology is a distributed, secure database called Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). The data is not stored on a central server as in classic databases but on thousands of computers and their servers, sometimes millions. Therefore, data management processes become tamper-proof and less susceptible to cybercrime — not surprisingly, this technology hasn’t lost its popularity among other software trends over the past few years.
Instead, blockchain technology holds the potential to continue revolutionizing software development by enabling secure, transparent, and decentralized systems that can streamline processes, enhance data integrity, and facilitate trust among participants. The use of blockchain in cryptocurrencies is better known, so here are a few examples of blockchain use in different industries:
Blockchain revolutionizes supply chain management with an immutable and transparent ledger to track goods from origin to consumers, ensuring authenticity, preventing counterfeiting, and optimizing logistics for enhanced traceability and efficiency.
Intellectual property rights
Blockchain transforms IP rights management through a decentralized platform where creators register and protect their works, establishing undeniable proof of creation, and ownership. Thus, blockchain simplifies licensing, royalties, and copyright enforcement.
Blockchain empowers individuals with control over digital identities, securely storing personal information, credentials, and assets, enhancing privacy, and reducing data breach risks. Using blockchain-based tools, modern software engineering streamlines identity verification, enabling seamless access while retaining personal data control.
With the abovementioned promising use cases, you can easily imagine a system that ends ransomware and improves the security of financial transactions worldwide. Also, imagine secure financial transactions sent directly from your bank to other retailers without intermediaries. Imagine using blockchain to record our medical treatments or eliminate fake IDs when buying products online — it doesn’t sound like science fiction anymore, but more likely seems a matter of time.
Low Code/No Code Development: The Easiest Way to Accelerate Software Delivery
For decades, companies had only two options for software development: purchase off-the-shelf applications from an external vendor or hire experienced programmers to develop and customize software entirely from scratch. However, LCNC (Low Code/No Code) (LCNC) development trend pushed the limits of application development opportunities.
Essentially, LCNC means developing software without a programming language but with the help of special tools and platforms. Low-code development has several advantages for companies in terms of rapid software delivery. This includes:
- the reduction of the development process by saving time on repetitive and low-level coding tasks;
- reduced software development costs by reducing the reliance on extensive manual coding and shortening development cycles;
- more employees with minimal coding experience can get involved in app development, expanding the pool of potential contributors and fostering innovation throughout the organization.
Figures speak for themselves: Gartner estimates that by 2026, non-IT personas will make up a substantial 80% of the user base for low-code development tools, which is a significant rise from 60% in 2021.
Even though software engineer trends like low-code platforms offer many advantages, it’s crucial to consider collateral limitations, a couple of them are listed below.
- Inadequate authentication. Low code/no code platforms often simplify the development process by handling authentication and authorization automatically. However, if not configured properly, this can lead to security loopholes, allowing unauthorized access to sensitive data and functionalities.
- Data vulnerability. With low code/no code development, the platform manages data handling and storage. This can introduce risks if the platform lacks robust data encryption and protection mechanisms, potentially leading to data breaches and leaks.
- Lack of code review. Low code/no code platforms abstract the underlying code, making it challenging for developers to review and identify security vulnerabilities manually. This can result in overlooking potential application code flaws, leaving it susceptible to exploitation.
Overall, thorough evaluations are essential when adopting low-code approaches.
The DevOps Culture: How it Reshapes Software Development?
Development and operations work better hand-in-hand, and gone are the days when the IT department could do a major update once a year — today, DevOps is one of the most prominent trendsetting practices among other software trends. DevOps aims at interconnecting software development and operational processes that results in more efficient workflows and accelerated time-to-market.
It is important to mention that the success of introducing DevOps principles can even be scientifically proven by measuring four main metrics (lead time, change failure, deployment frequency, and time to restore) from the DevOps Research and Assessment (DORA) research program. Continuous improvement is far more important than mere acceleration.
Adhering to DORa principles, Lightpoint Global, a DevOps services company, offers development, code management, testing, and deployment methods going through the following steps:
- Continuous integration (the continuous assembly of components into an application, enhancing the software quality by automating the construction of transparent product components using artifacts derived from source code).
- Continuous delivery (the artifact is automatically tested and then installed in the production environment).
- Continuous deployment (all the builds are automatically imported into the production environment).
DevOps is a large step towards a cultural change in software development and an important building block on the way to the entire cloud architecture — therefore, this software development trend is here to stay. A cloud strategy without DevSecOps is hardly conceivable today, so if you want to identify your current business needs and challenges to achieve faster time-to-market, reach out for expert advice.
Scaling New Heights: Cloud Computing in Modern Software Development
Cloud-based solutions aim to solve some of the biggest business world challenges, including scalability issues, high infrastructure costs, data security concerns, limited accessibility to resources, and the need for seamless collaboration across geographically dispersed teams.
In recent years, the possibilities for using cloud computing have extended not only to pure online storage but also to the mapping of entire processes. This gives users an unimagined range of possibilities, which are listed below.
Cloud computing allows scaling resources up or down based on demand, allowing businesses to easily accommodate fluctuating workloads and handle growth without the need for significant infrastructure investments.
By eliminating the need for on-premises infrastructure and the associated maintenance costs, cloud computing offers cost efficiency as businesses only pay for the resources they actually use, reducing upfront capital expenditures.
Flexibility and accessibility
Cloud computing enables users to access data, applications, and services from anywhere with an internet connection, providing flexibility and allowing for remote work, collaboration, and seamless access across different devices.
Enhanced data security
Cloud service providers typically employ robust security measures, such as data encryption, access controls, and regular backups, ensuring data protection and disaster recovery capabilities that often surpass those of on-premises systems.
Innovation and agility
Cloud computing facilitates rapid innovation by providing businesses with a range of cutting-edge tools and technologies that can be easily integrated into their applications. This agility allows organizations to experiment quickly, deploy new features, and stay competitive in a dynamic market landscape.
Still, there are a few disadvantages for your consideration. For example, cloud computing is only possible if an internet connection is available. This results in a single point of failure.
Moreover, given that all data is stored in the cloud, one might raise the following question: how secure is the cloud? Do other, possibly unauthorized, users have access to my data?
Despite the foregoing milestones, with the abundance of tools and practices, effective cloud migration and management can overcome security challenges seamlessly.
Key Takeaways on the Latest Software Development Trends
In conclusion, staying competitive in the software development industry necessitates embracing the latest trends that are poised to revolutionize the way we build and deploy applications. The rapid advancements in AI, machine learning, low-code development, DevOps, Cloud Computing and other formerly futuristic solutions offer immense opportunities to enhance productivity, accelerate innovation, and deliver exceptional user experiences.
By harnessing these trends, businesses can gain a competitive edge, adapt to evolving customer demands, and attract top talent in an increasingly digital and fast-paced world.
If you need support when embracing next-gen technologies, feel free to book a consultation with our experts.