Zero Configuration – a new level of convenience
Have you bought a piece of hardware recently? Maybe a phone, a new laptop or a smart home speaker? How many times did you take out the manual to figure out how to start, set up and operate the device? If you bought the right products, the answer should be “never”. This is commonly called plug & play. For our software solutions, we introduced “Zero Configuration” – a term we borrowed from the domain of network configuration.
Only a few years back, setting up a new phone or laptop could be a very time-consuming endeavor. You had to key in a bunch of passwords, download all your favorite apps (again) and install various drivers. Only then your device would run smoothly.
Nowadays, this process is far less complicated, and many times only takes a few button-clicks. An easy to follow installation-wizard guides you through the process. New devices are up and running in a matter of minutes without the need of cumbersome configuration – that’s why we decided to call this approach simply “Zero Configuration”. For many this new level of convenience is expected by now.
Increase User Acceptance
We strongly believe that Zero Configuration Thinking should not only become the new norm for consumer goods but also for the domain of Software Development and Architecture. Let’s explore how that works.
When we start a new project, Zero Configuration is one of the key considerations of developing and building a solution. Installing software and painstakingly configuring it with the help of a dedicated IT team should be a thing of the past. And the equation is simple:
high level of configuration + high complexity of settings = more expertise required to get the new software running = lower user acceptance.
A scenario that we software engineers try to avoid as much as possible – you’ve probably been in that situation way too many times and know what we’re talking about.
Wow your customers
Therefore, we want you to think of Zero Configuration when you embark on your next software development project. Think of the end user first and create your solution as simple as possible. If you can build a solution that runs without any major setup, that’s awesome! If your solution runs straight out of the box (i.e. portable application), that’s fantastic! You’re on the right path of delivering an awesome experience to your end-users.
Through Zero Configuration you can dramatically improve UX and thus reduce the amount of customer support needed – user happy, developer happy.
If you follow the Zero Configuration principle especially when building microservice architecture, we guarantee you that you’ll rock and your customers will love you for that!