Reality Check: Coghead
Coghead provides a web-based application that allows tech-savvy businesspeople (that is, non-programmers) to create and deliver their own web-based applications. Essentially, it’s bringing the “do-it-yourself” trend to software—hopefully disrupting tradition and changing the way software is created and used. It can help fill the large, unmet need for small, specialized applications because packaged software is too inflexible and custom development is too expensive and slow.
Coghead’s website is both an application authoring tool and an application delivery service. At Coghead’s website people can create an application using simple-to-learn methods (or pick a pre-built app from Coghead’s application gallery) and then invite co-workers to use the application. All anyone needs is a browser and an Internet connection. The key selling points are:
There’s no need to purchase new hardware or software.
Users can access applications anywhere they have Internet access.
Coghead applications are inherently multi-users.
Data and application are managed centrally and off-site.
These days lots of people complain about needing custom applications to do their jobs better, but not being able to get them because IT is busy with other things or because custom application development is just too expensive. Coghead aims to empower the people closest to the need to create and deliver business applications in hours.
Coghead advances the state-of-the-art in a couple of other areas as well. First, Coghead allows you to create applications with meaty business logic. “Business logic” used to be the domain of enterprise applications like SAP and Oracle. Coghead has included an intuitive ‘process builder’ that lets people put real business logic in their apps.
Second, Coghead provides rich web services integration. When you create an application in Coghead, it automatically generates a web services interface for that application. It also provides the capability to integrate external web services from other applications. All this means that Coghead is a sweet platform for creating mash-ups—applications that integrate with other web services like Google Maps or stock market feeds.
Coghead is just now rolling out their public beta and they already have several thousand people on the waiting list. Click here if you’d like to sign up for the public beta.
Full disclosure: I am on the advisory board of Coghead.