No developer program, platform or technology is an island. Developers leverage multiple developer programs, platforms, services, tools, methodologies and industry standards in their every day work. A developer building an enterprise database application will leverage ANSI SQL standard syntax and write code using one or more industry standard programming languages. A developer building a mobile home automation app will access devices via REST/JSON, BluetoothLE, a NEST thermostat, some beacons and a few Z-wave home controllers. In the previous two sentences, I’ve mentioned a developer’s reliance on at least 5 different industry standards that are driven by industry groups, driven by industry alliances in cooperation with global and national standards committees. Things can sometimes get more complicated or cause additional work when there are competing standards. Developer Relations programs and evangelists need to work with their engineering teams to understand the industry standards and work with industry associations to correctly educate developers about their products, platforms, services and devices. We also need to stay on top of the changes that take place in versions of standards.
Industry Associations and Standards
When I assess developer relations programs, one of the aspects I look at is which programming languages your program supports. When I see C++ listed, I look to see if I can find the support for the approved and draft specifications for ISO C++. When I see that a product or service supports home automation and the Internet of Things, I look for mention of Apple HomeKit, Zigbee, Z-Wave, Bluetooth Classic, BluetoothLE and the soon to arrive Bluetooth 5. When developers start to develop applications that integrate smartphones with cars, developer programs will have to evangelize how their products and services support Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, On-Board Diagnostics II connectors and the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE).
Developer Relations and Industry Standards
Which developer relations programs are doing a good job of integrating industry associations and standards into the everyday life of their developer members? Here are just a few of the many developer relations programs and developer community sites that work with industry associations and provide information to their members.
Microsoft – Windows Embedded Automotive 7. “Windows Embedded Automotive 7 is an extensible technology platform for automakers and suppliers to deliver in-car experiences that keep drivers connected and informed. Leveraging a range of devices, services and technology, the platform extends work and home into the vehicle through connected car scenarios.”
Google – Android Auto – “For the road ahead, Android Auto was designed with safety in mind. With a simple and intuitive interface, integrated steering wheel controls, and powerful new voice actions, it’s designed to minimize distraction so you can stay focused on the road.”
Intel – Intel IoT – “The developer kit is optimized for rapid prototyping—a way to prove or enhance your ideas or turn them into products. The kit provides all the hardware and software you need to speed up prototyping and time to production.”
Autodesk – BIM Interoperability – “Autodesk has supported the buildingSMART initiative on COBie (Construction Operations Building Information Exchange) BIM data standard. In January 2013, we completed the independently audited buildingSMART Alliance COBie Design Challenge for Architectural Design and Coordinated Design, achieving 100% positive marks with a complete COBie deliverable that required no additional processing or edits.”
Qualcomm – Embedded Computing – “Make the next generation of embedded systems more aware, connected, intelligent and interactive with the portfolio of hardware and software solutions on Qualcomm Developer Network. Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ processors for embedded deliver superior performance, low power consumption and support for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS connectivity.”
C++ compilers – Compiler support for new ISO C++ features. “These include C++11, C++14, C++17 and various technical specifications”.
Philips – Philips Hue and Apple HomeKit – “The new square-shaped Philips Hue bridge supports the hardware authentication required for Apple HomeKit and enables all your Philips Hue lights to work with Apple HomeKit technology. One of the coolest new features enabled by linking Philips Hue to Apple Homekit is that you can use Siri to control your Philips Hue lights. Turn on your lights. Dim to the desired brightness. Recall pre-set scenes. Even tell Siri to set up for a party.”
Apple – Bluetooth for Developers – “Create an engaging and connected user experience by integrating Bluetooth® wireless technology in your apps and hardware accessories. And with Core Bluetooth framework, it’s easy for your apps to interact with the growing number of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices.”
How does your Developer Relations program help members use Industry Standards?
I’ve only mentioned a very few of the tens of thousands of industry standards and associations that help guide application development. Let me know what your developer program does (beyond providing a links) to help your members build awesome apps that rely on multiple industry standards.