Programmers use source code to write software, apps, and web solutions for companies and projects. However, not all source code is created equal. There's a telling difference between code that “works” and source code that is efficient and futureproof.

There are many considerations that programmers must keep in mind when building future-proof code. Without them, code can quickly become obsolete, unreadable, or unsafe. So let's take a look into the seven main reasons why your source code matters to keep it clean and efficient.

Cost

On many occasions, hosting your code on a server of your choice can be a lot cheaper than having a 3rd-party build it and host it for you. A perfect example of this issue is e-commerce websites. When hiring a 3rd-party website builder to host your store, they generally take a percentage of every sale made using the store they made for you.

On top of that, if you ever go over their bandwidth, storage, or resource usage limits, you're going to have to pay extra fees. That can easily be fixed by self-hosting using one of the many modern options available like Amazon Web Services, Digital Ocean, and Heroku, making it painless to switch hosting providers while giving you total control.

Security

When building your website or application with 3rd-party builders or developers, sometimes you get only part of the product. This means you may not have access to the libraries used, part of the code, or what it accesses. 

Security issues can manifest in several ways, like malicious professionals introducing a backdoor, an outdated library leaving a crack on your security, or even poor coding, leading to errors and vulnerabilities. When you don't have full access to your source code, you can't audit it yourself for malware, malicious code, or security loopholes.

We should also consider data hygiene. Having access to your source code helps ensure your data isn't redundant, full of errors, outdated, or just straight-up wrong. Dirty code is inefficient, slow, unsafe, and regrettably, incredibly common. However, You can avoid these issues by analyzing the source code and employing safe code practices.

Privacy

Most web applications and websites deal with some form of sensitive data. For instance, controlling sensitive data like client information, payment details, or security credentials can make or break a business. Having full access to your source code gives you total control over stored data, ensuring it's efficiently stored and allowing control over permissions to access it.

This level of control allows you to employ security best practices like the principle of least privilege, saving your time, money, and increasing the overall security of your website or application.

Community

You're rarely the first to have an issue with your code. Sometimes your problem has already been looked at, explained, and fixed in a thread on Stack Overflow from a few years ago, saving you the time to post and the money to fix it.

And don't be fooled by the accessibility. Just because those answers and fixes are free and publicly available doesn't mean they're low quality. Experienced professionals of all technology areas regularly post in these forums, providing detailed answers to the community. Multiple users then iterate and test these answers, ensuring functionality and quality.

Version Control

By having your code available, you can use a source control solution like GitHub to improve several aspects of your operation. Once you have all your code managed by version control like Github, it becomes simple to bundle up a set of changes and push them together in a single build. This method helps avoid fumbling when trying to find all changes made in your next build.

When something goes wrong, like a piece of code not ready to be live or an unstable library gets implemented, you need a way to revert changes. And that's where the version control rollback feature helps, transforming an emergency into a momentary setback.

Version control also makes it much easier to have several devs working on the same project and makes peer reviewing code simple, leading to better code and fewer bugs. So if Julie notices that a set of changes by Tom may introduce some instability, Julie can pull the changes into their own work to verify, suggest edits, and even push changes of their own. All of this happens before Tom’s new code goes live to customers.

As products grow in time and naturally get more complex, this level of collaboration is critical to preventing customers from being the ones to discover the problem and the development team from rushing from one fire to the next.

Longevity

Every business wants to last long and prosper. To succeed online, you must have futureproof code that stands the test of time, changes in the market, and any issues that may arise during your years of operation. 

Code should be accessible, readable, and written in a form that devs down the line can understand and jump into a project without great pains. If your code is well-maintained and structured, you're never going to waste dev time trying to puzzle out messy code, making your project efficient and easier to change.

If you use a no-code website builder to make a website for your business, you're going to run into several long-term problems. For instance, if the company closes its doors, you'll lose everything you have built. They don’t even have to go out of business– they can just raise the price, knowing how difficult it would be for you to leave.

If you'd like to have your company around in the next decade, it's safer to have the source code in your hands. So if the website builder goes down for whatever reason, having access to your code protects your hard work and investments.

Portability

Source code gives you a level of control that is advantageous in many ways. For example, if you were to build a website today using a no-code builder, and tomorrow you needed to swap hosts, you would lose everything you have made so far due to lack of portability. However, portability is not a problem if you have the source code at hand. 

The flexibility of having your source code allows you to shop around for cheaper hosts that offer everything you need for your website. And if they ever become expensive, problematic, or no longer fit your project, it's just a matter of finding a new vendor and migrating while retaining all the work you've put into your project.

How Trivial Deals with Source Code

We believe that access to the source code is our customers' right. So we built Trivial for all the customers who want to develop quickly and without coding while maintaining the freedom to modify and host anywhere by exporting their source code.

Trivial is the only no-code builder in the market that allows you to export your source code. You can build incredibly fast with our platform without ever giving up ownership of your code.