A few months ago, I had the opportunity to test AppIgnite. Now, I want to share my Applgnite experience with you.
What Is AppIgnite?
AppIgnite is a web application that allows anybody with minimal technical knowledge to create web applications. If you know how to work with MS Excel, you can easily produce useful applications with AppIgnite in no time.
AppIgnite was developed by Jason Roberts, a freelance coder and the co-host of TechZing, a great tech podcast which I’ve mentioned in the past.
My first application in AppIgnite was an application for managing personal finance, which I have used to track my expenses/income from different categories.
The way it works:
When creating a new application, you can create models. In my application, I have a default “User Model” (which is responsible for user and permissions management in your app and is part of the basic skeleton for each AppIgnite application), “Entry Model” (which represents each expense/income) and “Categories Model.”
You can easily define properties for each model and even define relationships between the different models (for example, the “Entry Model” has 1 category). You can also set permissions for each model (from the built-in user/permissions management) and you can set the permissions for different CRUD functions within the same model.
Each model has “Views.” Views are the HTML templates for different screens in the application: New Entry form, Entries List table, etc.
AppIgnite has a built-in editor for the views. If you have technical knowledge, you can modify the HTML the way you’d like.
It has Version Control!
Well, not exactly. But it’s good enough. I believe Jason tried to keep AppIgnite as simple as possible for non-technical people to use it. That way, if you’ve made a mistake or accidently changed something, and you’d like to revert it, you can go back to the previous “build.”
Each change you make creates a new build (i.e. another version of your application). That way, when it breaks loose or you decide that you don’t like some of the latest changes, you can easily restore it to any of the past versions.
Exporting your application
This is one of the best features both business-wise and technically speaking. AppIgnite allows you to export the application you’ve created and keep on developing it.
When exporting the application, you’re getting all of the code (PHP) and database (MySQL) from your app. Even more, you get an install script. Then, all you have to do is upload it to your server and run the installation script.
Whom is it for?
This application is built so well, that it is suitable for all different levels of technical expertise and therefore has a ton of potential.
Let’s start with businesses that are both big and small. Not everyone has a huge ERP system that manages every little detail in the company. Many employees work with shared Excel documents which aren’t necessarily enough. It’s very costly for both your time and money to have custom software developed for that usage. Therefore, a solution like AppIgnite comes in handy. The coolest part is that AppIgnite is simple enough for employees to quickly create an application to manage the data they want.
Start-ups can speed up the development time of MVP or POC by creating an application with AppIgnite – exporting it and making all of the changes they want, right there, in the code. It’s even possible for them to use it for developing the final product!
Freelancers can use AppIgnite to generate a skeleton of their project, export the application, and keep developing the project. It’s a big time saver.
If you want to hear more about AppIgnite, you can follow Jason Roberts and listen to his podcast TechZing.