What is a Cloud Framework?

18 Nov 2016

We are building a “Cloud Framework” at Rappsio, which often draws blank stares from developers. This posts outlines what we mean by cloud framework and how it is different to other ways of building on the web.

Instant deployment - it’s the cloud!

The “cloud” means no infrastructure is required for developers. Just open your web browser and you have everything you need to build for the web. In a couple of clicks you have deployed a working application (from an existing template) and can begin customising in your web browser.

This means no infrastructure needs to be managed. No local development environment. No configuration of Apache / PHP / MySQL / Nginx / Ruby / Tomcat / etc. Just pure productivity.

You can guarantee your development, staging and production environments are identical as they are all in the cloud, running on the same infrastructure with the same configuration.

The cloud environment automatically provisions auto-scaling infrastructure, pre-configured caching, a global CDN, mail server, background processing engine and any other key pieces of infrastructure.

Build anything - it’s a framework!

Typical cloud tools oversimplify things, which restricts the viability of the tool as a development platform. For example, website builders can help you build a simple website, but try to do anything custom and you have to upgrade to something more powerful.

This is when a framework comes in handy.

There are many well known development frameworks; Laravel, Django, Zend framework, Ruby on Rails, Yii2. Developers choose these frameworks as they can then build anything. You can start building knowing you will be able to get the job done and have the tools to work around issues that may come up. Not to mention the open source libraries and modules built around these frameworks.

A cloud framework provides the flexibility, architecture and power of traditional frameworks.

In addition, unlike those traditional frameworks a “cloud framework” knows everything about your code and your infrastructure. This allows the cloud framework to provide new user interfaces for building software, without writing code… something a traditional framework can’t do.

Build faster - with a cloud framework!

Instant deployment

Clicking “deploy” and then starting to code in a matter of seconds is awesome.

Contextual Development

The deployed application and the development environment are all sitting in the cloud and know about each other. This allows for contextual development - where the application can be modified within itself.

Faster to learn

The learning curve for a new framework can be overwhelming, especially if you have never used a framework before. You need to understand the structure of the framework code before you can become productive.

However, a cloud framework provides a simpler user interface to guide you to the right spot to build or modify the application.

Faster to build

A framework built for the web, on the web opens up new possibilities.

It becomes possible to create new workflows that simplify the development process and enable non-developers to achieve more in a low-code environment… but that’s a post for another day.

Want to try the Rappsio framework?

Register now and we will let you in as soon as we can!

Posted by Chris