If you are a mobile developer who has been working on apps that require access to enterprise data sources, you’ve likely had to build your own backend (in Node.js or less likely in Java.) You also probably took a look at some of the cloud-based mobile backend-as-a-service (mBaaS) offerings, but quickly realized that these services assumed you had no pre-existing data and that any new data you created would live in their cloud.
At StrongLoop, we believe there’s a better way. Today, we are pleased to announce the immediate availability of LoopBack, an open source mBaaS based on Node.js. LoopBack enables you to create rich mobile apps that connect to enterprise data. It can be deployed privately in your datacenter or on your favorite cloud.
What is LoopBack?
We’ve put together a short video explaining our motivation behind creating the LoopBack project and the problems it aims to solve. Have a look:
Built on Node.js
Node is also quickly becoming the technology of choice for gaming and multi-media providers like Electronics Arts, GoldFire Studios, Frisb, Intel and Netflix. If you’d like to get a sample for the types of companies that have unlocked the power of Node.js for mobile backends, have a look at this Node.js infographic.
You can also have a look at this short video that illustrates how Node has arrived, and is ready for prime time!
Open source means extensible by design
Unlike other backend services or products that are black boxes, LoopBack is an open source project that can easily be extended at its core or by adding any of the over 41,000 community developed NPM modules.
On-Premise or in the Cloud
Because LoopBack isn’t a service, it means you have lots of options as to where you can host your private mBaaS. Besides running LoopBack locally in your datacenter, you can run it on one of six clouds currently supported, including:
- Cloud Foundry
- Red Hat’s OpenShift
- Rackspace Cloud
- Cloud9 IDE
Enterprise database connectivity
Out-of-the-box, LoopBack allows you to connect to multiple sources of data and services both in the cloud and in your data center through the Datasource Juggler. Data is accessed through a plugin called a Connector in LoopBack’s Datasource Juggler. Plugins are highly customizable and extensible. Unlike other mobile backends, LoopBack can leverage your existing data and organize it in the form of models. Currently supported are Oracle, MongoDB, and REST with more on the way!