No Code ≠ No Expertise

written by
Thomas Groc

The technologies NoCode have drastically lowered the technical barriers to the creation of web, mobile and software applications.

I sincerely believe that it is now possible for anyone to become an expert in a technology NoCode regardless of their background. However, claiming that the learning process is almost instantaneous is in my opinion a mistake.

No Code does not mean No Expertise.

With the democratization of technologies NoCode and the deliberately idealized speeches of the editors, it can be easy to overestimate one's skills and expertise on a given tool; this cognitive bias is called the Dunning-Kruger effect.

Not a day goes by without a new technology NoCode or LowCode entering the market: it is tempting (and exciting) to discover and test the possibilities offered by these new tools.

For most of them, vendors promise a fast learning curve: from a few minutes for some to a few days for others. In reality, the vast majority of NoCode technologies require a much longer learning curve. This is even more true if the developer's vocation NoCode is to become professional and work on complex projects with high stakes.

So what does the Dunning-Kruger effect tell us?

Demonstrated in the work of two researchers from the Department of Psychology at Cornell University, David Dunning and Justin Kruger, published in 1999, the Dunning-Kruger effect consists of stating that a person who is incompetent on a tool (in the sense of his or her history of expertise on the subject) will always tend to overestimate his or her confidence and competence in it.

Dunning-Kruger curve

But quickly, as they encounter the first difficulties and experiment more deeply with the tools, this person will necessarily fall into the valley of despair marked by a radical decline in their confidence and ability in the tool.

By persevering and continuing to learn, it will then follow a slower learning and confidence curve before reaching the Plateau of Sustainability of knowledge and expertise. Of course, all of this takes time and the Slope of Enlightenment may be more or less steep from one technology to another.

Let's take an example: the discovery of a tool NoCode like Bubble.

The editor's ambition is to allow everyone to develop web applications without touching a line of code. Bubble is working hard to guide the use of the tool and provide documentation and tutorials to smooth the learning curve.

By discovering Bubble and doing the first tutorials, it is easy to make a first functional minimalist application such as creating a page that will display an image of an apartment with a description of it and possibly a button to learn more.

The first thing that comes to mind is that we are confident that we can build the next AirBnB. We have a strong confidence in our ability to develop a robust platform of this type. In reality, we are still far from it.

At this stage of maturity on the knowledge of the technology, any attempt to create a scalable and powerful platform like AirBnB will be doomed to failure and the company will be disappointed because the development of a web application on Bubble calls for many learnings (creation of a responsive interface, architecture of a robust database, implementation of optimized workflows, API connector, security and privacy rules ...).

API Connector from Bubble

Finally, it should be noted that NoCode technologies evolve very quickly. Vendors update their tools with new features - so the learning process is endless.

Although the technologies open the doors of development that were previously closed to most people, they require rigorous learning and time to understand all the ins and outs of the tools.

Whether you are self-taught or trained, there are many ways to learn NoCode and join the Kruger Curve Plateau of Expertise!