73 points by doener
14 days ago
Not even close to AppSmith:
- Open source
- Self hosted
- VCS integration via git
- Lots of widgets
- Support for custom JS anywhere
- UI is okayish (for internal apps)
If this was open source & self host able then maybe but as it stands, there's no point. AppSmith has been the only low-code tool that allowed me to build exactly what I wanted thanks to their JS support. Budibase etc all lack that and fail miserably outside of a few standard cases.
I see collaboration software primarily in the context of work in a company. Self hosting OS is something I rarely see, as focus on your own product renders such endeavours a distraction. You substitute money for speed.
I like it when there is more competition. It forces Retool, Appsmith, etc to up their game and not become complacent. One of them may have a couple of extrea feature here or there right now, but 12-18 months from now the current tech lead will become a wash and the race is on.
The big price in this space probably is the great unbundling of enterprise software, i.e. taking a bite out of Oracle, SAP. I attended a top 100 customers event at SAP once, you'd be shocked at the amount of despreration (from massive global 500 companies) to get SAP to implemented the stuff they urgently need. Apparently it takes multiple years on average...
Hi shaqbert! I agree with you. We believe in two fundamental trends. First, most software built for internal use are “low-complexity” use cases (dashboards, workflow management/automation,…) where low-code platforms are often a great choice. Second, the next generation of software needs to be built for true multiplayer use - making teams more productive, especially when not always co-located. Our ambition is to make building real-time collaborative tools fast and easy.
Hey, lead maintainer of Appsmith here. Thank you so much for the kind words. :)
We are currently working on improving the UI so that you can build more modern-looking applications. Is there anything that you think we should improve/add to the product?
Love what you have done with AppSmith. I started with Budibase but their query language didn't allow for cross collection/db queries. Then I learned about AppSmith and it was absolutely phenomenal. I wasn't particularly impressed by the UI (Uify looks much more modern) but I wasn't building anything public. Here's my use-case:
- Managing users (user data is spread across multiple services/db so JS works very well here)
- SaaS analytics (total users, monthly users, subscriptions etc. For this AppSmith's charts "just worked" along with full support for MongoDB query language).
- Managing small internal tools (sending emails to users via GUI etc.)
I haven't tried some of the new stuff you guys have shipped yet (the new table, some light customization etc.). The whole reason behind choosing something like AppSmith was that I will only have to be concerned about data. No fuss about UI. No manual styling. No tinkering. For this AppSmith is perfect.
Along this line, I think what would be absolutely amazing is something like themes. They should be separate (think like editor themes). Theme designers can design how the widgets will look. Builders will focus on what they want to build. Instead of adding multitudes of controls and customizability in the widget view, this would be a better approach imo since I'd never be able to customize everything consistently which would result in a really broken UI.
Aside from that, AppSmith is great. Oh another thing that really frustrated me was the small inline editor for events/callbacks. It'd be super helpful to allow maximizing it somehow. Another thing in the same line is allowing importing modules. So for example, I can use AppSmith's minimal SDK to code my logic in TS using VSCode and then import that into AppSmith and it just works. It'd also allow using JS-only libraries from npm etc. This is definitely not as simple as it sounds but you get the idea.
Thanks for mentioning AppSmith. Trying it out may be an impulse to finally tackle that internal tool that I have been procrastinating about for a while.
Hey longrod! Dom, Co-founder at Uify here. Thanks a lot for your input - Appsmith is a solid product, and successful for good reason. While we share a base set of functionality for app building (visual editor, datasource integrations, “JS anywhere”), our vision is fundamentally different. The goal is not to enable the user to build a set of stand-alone internal tools, but rather to create flexible, collaborative workspaces for their teams. Our product is focused on collaboration across these apps (e.g. think: GSheet experience in tables), workflow automations and a modern approach to developer experience (TS instead of JS, testing framework built-in, more powerful IDE with usage tracking etc.). We will reach our milestone of launching publicly soon, and I hope you will give it a try and see for yourself :)
Every low-code tool I've tried becomes a pain compared to regular code. Zero or minimal VCS support (no, generated xml dumps or zip files don't count). Eventually they become complicated enough that non programmers can't use them and regular programmers would rather write code than use these.
Who even makes the decision to use these ? Management ?
Same story with directus, thought it'd be cool to no code easily create a db table, and generate the subsequent api.
However, it's actually much faster to use something like Laravel, where most of the work is boilerplate cli commands.
I use directus as a headless CMS (for blogging, etc), its okay for that. But for an application, straight up no.
I think they are useful for a niche. At work we have a bunch of ‘excel’ apps for handling internal work. It’s really a mess and they frequently break down. Some are just CRUD interfaces for a database. For these things I really think something like this could be useful. Management wouldn’t have to force it on me.
You don’t really run into issues because they never get more complicated then store this data into that. Or if this, show that. And if they do full re-write in real code.
> For these things I really think something like this could be useful
That's the thing though: you just think it could be, because it looks useful.
I agree with the original point. The tech looks great on paper, but once you're actually doing more then a hello world example you'll quickly stumble upon a problem and it'll take ages to solve.
Id suggest everyone to prefer excel over any low/no-code solution. They usually already have basic competency in it and it's much easier to find help when you come upon a problem.
Unless they can code, then just write a simple PoC. It's not that hard with today's readily available frameworks
I mostly see these low-code tools being useful for developers actually. Maybe it is because I am a backend developer but it always takes me quite some time to build even simple CRUD interfaces. I would assume with these tools I would just be a few clicks.
Not sure if this is a general trend but the companies I worked at anything computer related is an IT problem. The non coders at my company would never try a tool like this they would ask someone from IT to do it for them. The idea would be that a tool like this makes that process faster a cheaper. And perhaps makes the UX of the end result better then an excel sheet full of macros.
Give SkyMass a try. It has the convenience and productivity of lo/no code tools but it’s entirely code based.
This looks amazing. This is something that I would probably recommend to my clients as a consultant as a tool they could use to build their own tools. Right now I tend to recommend Airtable but that has issues and deficiencies with building tools/UIs on top of it.
I guess a lot of comments here will be about low-code which probably speaks to the bias of HN but that's kind of silly since low-code is extremely powerful and pervasive in the corporate world now.
Can you explain why the emphasis is on the collaboration on tool building? The collaboration ability seems like a cool and valuable feature but it seems really confusing to make that so central to the marketing.
The tool building itself is extremely valuable and sophisticated on its own. That must have taken an enormous amount of work so I don't understand why the collaborative aspect is the main thing being highlighted.
What are your recommendations, aside from Airtable?
I've dabbled in the whole Microsoft low/no-code ecosystem, but mostly just because it was easily available. Recommendations would be appreciated.
I can highly recommend https://fibery.io. They have a comparison of Fibery vs. Airtable if you are familiar with the latter: https://fibery.io/blog/fibery-vs-airtable-we-connect-your-ba...
The only thing it's really lacking is granular (per-field/entity) access controls, which is on their roadmap (although it's worth noting it's been on their roadmap for quite a while).
I'm a pretty technical guy, and I read the whole landing page, and I still don't really get what this is.
Is it a low-code app builder with a real-time collaboration model? Something else?
I was confused too. At one point I got the same impression that the multiplayer collab was for building the apps. But in another section, it seemed to be for the app users.
Point taken - the messaging needs improvement :). Nevertheless, you got it right. Our app builder is real-time collaborative, so you can build together with other engineers, or even product managers. More importantly, apps built with Uify are deployed to a unified workspace and have real-time collaborative functionality out of the box (i.e. we do all the heavy lifting of dealing with shared data types and state sync on the transport layer). I hope this clarifies your questions - happy to elaborate further on any of these points if you are interested :)
Seeing Google SSO and not Microsoft SSO that comes with dirt cheap plans is so last year. :-)
Now that Google Workspaces costs $12/month/user (for anything over 15GB storage) it makes more sense for most small businesses to jump on the O365 platform:
Included with these dirt cheap plans, there's an Azure AD included that supports unlimited SSO to arbitrary third party apps.
At the very least, have a "Sign in with" button that supports Microsoft Accounts including Work/School not just personal.
Don't take on liability for user credentials and password management, there are plenty options to just accept a pre-auth'd identity:
And any business doing it right wants one account to work across SaaS providers, even if the business is only 3 girls in a garage just starting out.
Don't charge an SSO tax, it's good for you and your customers.
Thanks Terretta! Dom, Co-founder at Uify here. I fully agree that the available ecosystem of identity providers is diverse, and that the user should not be limited to a single one, or a small subset. We have multiple authentication methods on our roadmap, and hope we can release those in the near future.
I think, it looks a bit much like Retool. Otherwise collab and notifications is useful in a tool like this. And I liked the organization of multiple apps in the sidebar.
Hey! Dom, Co-founder at Uify here. We did not reinvent the wheel when it comes to the WYSIWYG editor and use of JS anywhere, that’s true (although there are a bunch of developer experience and performance improvements). As mentioned above, our focus is on the creation of collaborative spaces for teams, tailored to their job to be done. The way our early customers are using the product is fundamentally different from what can be done with Retool & co.
Can I host this myself/is it open-source? Trusting a solely hosted offering just won't work for me in this day and age.
Thanks :). On-prem is on the roadmap and will be shipped soon! Since we hear that quite a bit: The on-prem requirement is pretty clear, but what would be your key motivator for wanting open-source?
Is it you-eye-fy or oo-wee-fy?
"Software interfaces designed by committee"... Tell me you've never had to deal with decisions made by a committee, without telling me.
In a perfect world this sounds great, in practice I can see it getting very messy.