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Progress Software: Still ahead of its time or in need of modernization?

Progress Software was founded in 1981 and at the time, Progress was revolutionary for making it easier and faster to build large applications through a fourth-generation language (4GL)

For decades, Progress was way ahead of its time, with the launch of their first GUI-based product written entirely in 4GL. In many ways It proved to be the first form of low-code development. But once past the hype cycle, Progress faced its own innovation challenges..

The history of the Progress platform

Progress: the transition from innovative to out-of-date

Despite numerous attempts to transform Progress ABL has gradually acquired the status of "legacy technology". Many Progress customers are still reluctant to make the transition to the latest version, and from the classic app server to the PASOE. Yet, many Progress users are feeling stuck. Maintaining Progress OpenEdge applications is becoming increasingly difficult, due to the growing shortage of Progress developers.

Thinkwise provides a development platform to ensure a smooth transformation as well as a future-proof environment that evolves at the same speed as your organization. It sets your business up for an open and connected world.


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Applications that grow with your organization

Ultimately, organizations with Progress OpenEdge applications all face the same challenge: how do we make sure our applications can keep up with a rapidly changing world? It's critical to find the right technology before investing massive amounts of time, money and resources. Thinkwise provides the technology to ensure that your application will always remain technologically up to date.

So how does Thinkwise differ from Progress?

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Always up-to-date
Gone are the days of technologically obsolete software

With Thinkwise, your applications become technology independent; you focus on maintaining the model, rather than single lines of code. The underlying technology, such as User Interfaces, Service Tiers, and databases are periodically updated for you,  without impacting previously built applications. This means that a Thinkwise application will never become a legacy in any of these areas and will always remain technologically fit.
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Authorization and permissions
Built-in authorization system: no more need for manual programming

The Thinkwise Platform features a built-in authorization system. Many other platforms do not have authorization integrated into their systems, which then has to be programmed manually. Managing and maintaining a separate asset properly in the long run is a complex challenge. When integrated in the model, it is very easy to create new users, including all associated rights and roles. This is crucial in organizations with many different types of users in- and externally and security vulnerabilities.

The platform also supports OpenID authentication by default. Various OpenID providers, such as Azure AD, Facebook, Gmail, etc. are available. Furthermore, the platform itself can be used as an OpenID provider, allowing third-party applications to use Single Sign-on (SSO) with accounts stored in the Thinkwise Platform.
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Flexible test database
Rapid & efficient testing

Software development requires a great deal of testing and continuous improvement. The Thinkwise Platform integrates test cases into the model, which means they continue to function properly even after changes to either the data model or the GUI model.

In addition, the Thinkwise AI-powered development environment lets you automatically generate test cases based on the model.
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Migrate your applications easily
Modernizing comprehensive systems using the Upcycler

A major added value of the Thinkwise Platform is its integrated solution for modernizing RPG-AS/400. With the Upcycler you can create a first version of a Thinkwise application by simply importing an RPG-AS/400 application. The result will obviously not be ready for production just yet, but a significant part of the work will have been done for you automatically.

The process to Upcycle a Progress application roughly consists of the following steps
  1. Extracting model & data
  2. Importing model
  3. Transforming meta model to Thinkwise model
  4. Deploying the application
  5. Importing legacy data into the Thinkwise application
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The key to a data-driven organization

It goes without saying that software needs to be able to communicate with other systems. Our integrated service tier provides secure access to all desired data and functionality through an open API based on the OData protocol.

The Thinkwise Platform offers extensive integration capabilities such as: 
  • Database connectivity
  • Web Services
  • Business Intelligence
  • Microsoft Exchange
  • Office and reporting
1. How does Thinkwise mitigate the risk of Vendor Lock-in?

Thinkwise minimizes lock-in to a minimum by offering open standards. We don't have a proprietary programming language and the entire model you build and the database are directly accessible outside the Thinkwise environment. You can use your own cloud or servers and even deploy the business logic to a location of your choice. In the event that you really want to stop using Thinkwise, everything can be saved or reused, including code comments.

2. Why wouldn't I face the same challenges with Thinkwise in 10 years?

There are several reasons why this will not happen. The main reason is that the platform itself is built with the platform, just as a 3D printer prints the next, better version of a 3D printer. This means that just like your applications, the platform itself will never become technologically obsolete, so it will not become legacy itself.

At Thinkwise, We
Connect, Deliver, Leap