Header Bar

Is The Rebol App Builder Similar to Scratch, GDevelop, or Filemaker Pro?

Contents:

1. Is The Rebol App Builder Similar to Scratch, GDevelop, or Filemaker Pro?
2. ... or is it like web development or traditional software development?
3. What can I do with it? Why should I try it?

1. Is The Rebol App Builder Similar to Scratch, GDevelop, or Filemaker Pro?

2. ... or is it like web development or traditional software development?

You may have heard of Scratch and other 'visual' software building tools used to teach children about programming. Scratch and similar tools are meant to create fun games and multimedia apps which make use of moving graphics, sounds, drawings, and other entertaining elements. At another end of the spectrum, Filemaker Pro and tools such as Microsoft Access are meant to build business apps by combining a database engine with a straightforward drag-and-drop GUI form designer. While Scratch and Filemaker are both simple to use, the domain of each tool is limited to creating very specific types of apps, compared to the broad range of apps which can be created with traditional general purpose programming languages. The Rebol App Builder encompasses all the same capabilities as complicated traditional general purpose programming languages, without the dramatically difficult learning curve. It's as easy to use as visual app builders, but it guides users through creating apps which have a far wider range of functionality, using a simple to learn language generation tool.

The Rebol App Builder is a tiny 500k (half a megabyte) application, which you can download for free, and instantly learn to make 50 app examples within a few hours. There are absolutely no limitations, royalties, or fees needed to use the app builder. It's completely free and open source.

The Rebol App Builder gives you everything you need to start creating apps without writing any code. Along the way, it helps you progress naturally to writing your own code completely from scratch. The code generated by the App Builder appears immediately on screen as you select actions and data sources. It can be edited, mixed with copy/pasted code taken from any outside source, etc., without constraint, directly in the App Builder. The learning curve of the app builder can be measured in hours, days, and weeks, rather than weeks, months, years, and decades. You can use the app builder as a reference tool once you've learned how to write Rebol code, and/or jump back and forth seamlessly between using the code generator, and writing your own code from scratch. Even for absolute beginners without any experience, it's easy enough for young children to master, and the end result is the ability to use the full power of a mature general purpose programming language, which can produce powerful apps of nearly any kind.

What makes the App Builder possible is the uniquely simple nature of the Rebol programming language. Rebol is ultra productive and potent, and its entire purpose is to remove the layers of complexity inherent in other development tools. The well respected redmonk.com analyst site determined Rebol to be THE most productive general purpose programming language there is, anywhere. You can read more about why Rebol is so dramatically productive here. There really isn't anything else like it.

3. What can I do with it? Why should I try it?

If you try the Rebol App Builder for a single day, using the point-and-click builder, you can learn to re-create the 50 example apps explained on this page. When you're done doing that, you'll have a solid understanding of how to create apps with Rebol, with lots of working pieces to draw from and build upon. If you compare how long it takes to achieve the same goals using any other software development tool, you'll find that there's no other similarly productive option. Take a look at http://re-bol.com/short_rebol_examples.r to see more than 80 examples of applications that exist within just a few pages of code, covering everything from graphics to network apps, web site apps, games and puzzles, business tools, data processing apps, image manipulation apps, music apps, and more (the Rebol App Builder is actually one of the apps contained in those brief pages of code). Look anywhere else in the world to find that wide a range of applications created using anywhere near that little readable code (i.e., such a small and a manageable amount of time and development work), and you'll start to get an incling of just how productive it can be to use Rebol to build apps.

The author has been writing code for nearly 40 years, using Rebol for nearly 20 years, and has written well known tutorials and texts for a wide variety of popular programming tools. Search for "Livecode tutorial", "Learn Haxe", "NS-Basic", "RFO Basic", "Etsy API Tutorial", "Business Programming", "Easiest Programming Language", as well as "Learn Rebol", and you'll see the author's publications at the top of the first page of Google results. Search for "Consignment Software", and you'll see that the author's "Merchants' Village" software (freeconsignmentsoftware.com) is one of the most popular retail consignment software packages on the Internet. The Merchants' Village software has been used to sell 10s of millions of items in some of the biggest retail consignment operations in the world. Add to that many commercial software projects which have been used reliably throughout a broad variety of demanding industries, by clients of every size, for decades, and you can trust that Rebol is a professional solution capable of genuine software development power.

You may be at this site because you've looked into and/or tried to learn how to program, and found it to be too time consuming. You're right - learning to program using traditional languages really is a horribly complicated process which can take years. The modern programming language landscape is filled with ridiculously complex tools of all sorts. You can read tens of thousands of pages of instructional text, spend years learning, and still end up with only a basic knowledge of the enormous ecosystems surrounding Java, C++, Javascript and even languages like Python which are supposed to be 'easy' to learn. You can spend months, or years, just learning about all the features of the huge IDEs used by Java developers, or learn everything needed about front-end and back-end web development (HTML, CSS, Javascript, SQL and database systems, server languages such as PHP, web server software such as Apache, server operating systems such as Linux, etc.), and you'll come away knowing that you've got a long journey ahead if you choose to pursue any such route. Even tiny languages such as Lua, and 'productive' languages such as Clojure require mountains of complex underlying dependencies to operate, and even the easiest tools such as Scratch and Filemaker Pro require months of practice to become proficient.

The Rebol App Builder is built on a much different kind of technology, relentlessly designed from the core up to remove every possible layer of bloat and complexity found in traditional tools. Rebol runs exactly the same, without any third party dependencies or libraries, on all desktop operating systems (Windows, Mac, Linux), nearly 40 legacy OSs (BSD, Solaris, QNX, Amiga, BeOS, Windows CE, etc.), and there are versions for currently popular platforms such as Android, Raspberry Pi, and even a core version which runs directly in modern web browsers. Just download the tiny 1/2 megabyte executable, and you're ready to create real apps. Distributing your apps is just as easy. Users only need to download the same 1/2 megabyte interpreter to run any script you create, or you can package the minuscule runtime together with any script you make into a stand-alone app for any operating system.

Try the Rebol App Builder for a short period, then try other tools. Look at the number and type of apps you're actually able to produce with the same amount of time and effort, and you'll find that there's no other solution like the Rebol App Builder and the Rebol language itself. With the Rebol App Builder, you can start without writing code at all, and progress to using the most potent, simple, and productive language there is anywhere.