Rapid application development

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Rapid Application Development ( RAD ) or rapid application development is a concept for software development with a prototypical process model co-thought by Barry Boehm in the 1980s . It is used to make software development more flexible compared to classic process models such as the waterfall model and to be able to adapt to rapidly changing requirements.

The basis of RAD is the spiral model . RAD provides a prototypical procedure in which the requirements for a software are collected and implemented as quickly as possible into executable code. This is presented to the client at a relatively early stage in order to identify misunderstandings in the requirements as well as additional requirements. The changes will be implemented in a further version and presented again. These cycles are run through until the client is satisfied with the software and accepts it.

RAD development environments are Microsoft Visual Basic and Embarcaderos RAD Studio (a software package consisting of Delphi and C ++ Builder ) under Windows and Gambas under Linux. The RAD tools include Visual Studio LightSwitch for .NET , Servoy and XDEV 3 for Java , Omnis Studio and 4th Dimension for Mac and Windows, or the IBM Lotus Domino Designer . Especially user interfaces can be designed visually with such tools. In addition, the Free Pascal development system Lazarus offers the possibility of creating cross-platform GUI applications for GNU / Linux, Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows.


The RAD approach usually requires less preparatory work and planning and thus ensures productive results faster. Thanks to the time saved and the parallel development of the various software development phases, this form of software development means that ready-to-use software can usually be delivered in less than 120 days. In addition, the constant interaction between users and the developing prototype ensures higher quality.

The fast delivery of productive software, the fast iterations made possible by it and the close involvement of the user are characteristics of agile software development .


Individual evidence

  1. Tiger Logic UK Ltd: Omnis. In: www.omnis.net. Retrieved September 14, 2016 .