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Ivo Meißner for Slicknode

Posted on • Originally published at slicknode.com

Announcing Slicknode Open-Source: GraphQL Framework + Headless CMS

I have big news to share: I am releasing Slicknode, the GraphQL application framework + headless CMS, as Open-Source-Software!

This gives developers and digital agencies a free, more efficient, and open way for building custom digital solutions that usually require the budget for custom software development or enterprise licenses.

Watch how Slicknode makes web developers a lot more productive in this 3 min demo

Why Slicknode?

The web has evolved significantly in the last 15 years. We now have AI-powered content delivered to users across the globe, real-time communication with video, VR, and countless SaaS providers that offer functionality for every use-case imaginable. Sadly, a lot of these capabilities are not as accessible to developers as they could be. The development of such solutions happens in silos, in separate companies doing redundant work. Using and combining multiple of those functionalities requires significant integration effort and deep knowledge of the integrated system. Extending a 3rd party SaaS offering is very hard or impossible. You almost always have to create a custom backend to create something innovative. Unfortunate for countless businesses, people, and organizations that could benefit tremendously from such solutions, this is out of budget in a lot of cases.

Projects either settle for sub-optimal compromises or spend way more than they would like on a custom backend. You could circumvent the development process by using one of the page builders that come with a tempting price tag but have severe limitations and hard vendor lock-in.

Those barriers inhibit innovation. We see the result of that all over the internet: Boring websites that all look the same and do the same thing. People then spend the majority of their time on the websites of tech giants instead of on the websites of their local stores, communities, and people they see in real life.

Let's fix this with open-source software! I want to help developers create an internet where the best ideas win, not the biggest budgets. I want to enable every developer to create innovative solutions that can compete at the highest levels. But to accomplish this, we need a new approach for how we build digital solutions.

Headless Functionality

We need to free the functionality from the silos of corporations and make them easily accessible to anyone, ready to use, extend and combine. We need to decouple the functionality from the presentation layer. It gives us the flexibility we need to use any frontend framework and create solutions for any device. Headless CMSes have done this successfully in recent years, but they are mostly still limited to content. If we want to combine the functionality of multiple services, we still have to do the integration manually in the frontend, which adds complexity (error + loading states, handling authentication, etc.).

Slicknode eliminates this integration effort by applying the headless concept to any functionality you could imagine. The workflow becomes extremely simple with a modular architecture: You compose your custom backend with existing modules, 3rd party APIs, and your internal services into a unified data graph.

Need certain functionality in your project?
Just install the module - Done!

What if there is no module available for what I need?
Simply create a new one in minutes using the flexible building blocks that Slicknode provides and share it with the web developer community.

This dramatically reduces the amount of knowledge you need to build complex solutions. For example, you don't have to be a Shopify developer anymore to add eCommerce functionality to your website. You can simply install an existing module or embed an API with minimal effort.

Slicknode brings the power of all the APIs in the world right into your user interfaces. You can mix and match functionality from multiple service providers, extend their functionality with ease, and build solutions on top of the GraphQL API. You can enjoy the freedom to use any tools, programming languages, and frameworks you know and love without giving up control.

The Vision

The purpose of Slicknode is to provide a platform that empowers developers to build better solutions in less time. In 10 years, I want to look at the web and think: "There is no way I could have built those solutions with the tools from 10 years ago!"

I want Slicknode to be the platform where developers can share ideas and solutions to existing and future problems. A collaborative and welcome community where we can help each other build the next generation of the internet.

I invite all web developers to become a part of this. Share Slicknode far and wide, invite your friends and co-workers and start building great digital solutions. Let's make this the best, most friendly, and welcoming Open-Source community that empowers developers worldwide!

Where Do I Start?

The best place to start is the quickstart guide and the Github repository. Create your first project in minutes and start hacking. I will also be publishing more and more examples in the Slicknode YouTube channel and on Twitter.

I'm looking forward to working with all of you and making the world a better place through collaboration and open-source software!

Best,
Ivo Meißner
Creator of Slicknode

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