With mobile initiatives becoming a priority across organizations, developers have to be on top of their game to provide beneficial programs and foster improved operations. For many businesses, applications are essential to their everyday processes, meaning that this software must have the features that workers need to do their jobs effectively. However, the approach that app creators take will determine whether or not their effort was successful. Following an agile method and using newer languages like open source components and HTML5 will help give users the experience they want while ensuring that they have the tools they need to be productive.

Exploring open source possibilities
In many cases, developers are starting to look for the best way to create their application while improving on cost, quality and time to market. For many, this answer comes from open source coding. According to a WhiteSource survey, although this repository may be advantageous to app projects, developers may be going beyond compliance with the licenses of these components. Of the 120 organizations, 53 percent do not keep an inventory of what open source elements they leverage, and 18 percent only realize they're using these components when they appear in their programming for the first time.

Many app builders are using open source code as a free-to-copy solution, but this could violate the original owner's usage policies. This is seen by the fact that there are no policies for how to use or license open source contributions for three-fourths of businesses. However, by keeping track of component suites used, developers can easily drive future projects and ensure that they follow open source guidelines.

"For the most part, open source is mismanaged by software vendors large and small," said Rami Sass, WhiteSource's CEO. "This results in costs that are relatively hidden, and exposes the company to a wide range of security vulnerabilities which, in turn, can cause even greater internal costs or open the company up to various risks."

Leveraging an agile mindset
While some developers still use the legacy waterfall approach, more app builders are starting to utilize agile processes. This allows programmers to continually test throughout the project lifecycle and ensure that they are actively meeting stakeholder and user expectations. Dr. Dobb's contributor Pollyanna Pixton noted that agile development fosters continuous learning that enables coding experts to explore different options and constantly improve their operations. With this mindset, testers can also more easily eliminate issues before the product is released. Using the agile approach, developers can take the customer needs into consideration, empowering the business to provide quality experience and reap the maximum benefits.

"Learn what 'value' means to customers. Understand what will make them successful," Pixton wrote. "Prioritize and reprioritize based on what you have learned because what 'value' is tends to change as time goes by."

By learning how to leverage open source and agile development, developers can greatly improve their app building projects. With these tools, businesses can meet user expectations while constantly innovating to stay relevant in the market.