Inside DLite: low-code components, model-driven tools, local-first and eco-design explained

DLite is an Open Source Low-Code platform that is designed to help building web front-ends. It is based on Web standards, such as the Vue.js reactive framework, and Bootstrap, the popular UI kit for responsive web design. In short, the core of DLite is a wrapper around BootstrapVue, including basic low-code components such as inputs, and more advanced components such as tables. Also, DLite comes with additional low-code components such as graphs (a chart.js wrapper), and many layout components such as containers, splitters (a split.js wrapper), tabs, and many others.

DLite’s comes with the following Open Source key elements:

  • Many low-code components to build UIs fast;
  • Model-driven tools, such as a model editor (which can create models inferred from a JSON structure), and builders, which can automatically create full forms and CRUD editors out of a model;
  • A local-first API and service (including an Open Source server for a sync service);
  • A builtin probe to measure consumed resources (in order to help with responsible software development and eco-design).

In this post, I will explain how these 4 key elements work. The source code for all these is available here.

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When Low Code meets Local-First Software

In this post, I explain the dLite low-code platform approach to build frontend applications. dLite relies on a new paradigm called the Local-First Software paradigm. With this paradigm, one can build applications using local data, which remains the ownership of the user. A generic synchronisation protocol is used to access the data cross-device, and a sharing protocol is used to share data among users and build collaborative applications. I explain that the Local-First paradigm is particularly well-fitted to low-code, since it removes the need of a specific backend and database for each application. Additionally, security and data privacy comes by design, so that all the complex access-right management usually required on the server-side for collaborative applications is not required anymore. As a consequence, it drastically reduces the complexity of the application as well as its maintenance and evolution costs. Last but not least, it is Green IT friendly since it opens the door to a better use of resources by reducing remote invocations, taking better advantage of the terminal (client) side computing power, and saving complex server-side CI/CD, application-server layers, and huge centralized databases.

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MC2: a tool to remotely monitor computer resources

For more than a year now, EASYTEAM and Cinchéo have been working on a project that aims at creating new methods and tools to help IT departments to control the carbon footprint linked to digital services. It is a vast and complicated topic and a lot needs to be achieved. With MC2 (say M-C-square), we are contributing a small and modest part to the tooling ecosystem.

In this post, I will explain the principles of MC2 and how it works. The source code is fully available on Github:

NOTE: MC2 it is still work in progress and is a small part of a wider R&D project involving EASYTEAM (Constellation group) and INRIA (Spirals team).

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