Talk: Drag and Drop Code, Thunkable, and Democratizing Software

I gave a talk to Lat Twae Education, an organization in Myanmar dedicated to teaching kids computer science. They’re using my Thunkable book to teach app building.

Watch the talk on youtube

I demo the basics of app building with thunkable, including a translation app and an image recognition app, and I show how easy it is to “appify” a spreadsheet and do something with the data. For the talk, I built a raffle app: I let audience members add themselves to the public sheet, then I added code that chose one of the entries randomly to win a free book.

I also show another tool, Adalo, and talk about how it provides a dialog-based “nocode” method of specifying data filtering, and I give my take on how “NoCode” tools are democratizing software development. You can check out the talk here.

Updated Login-Only App

I updated the LoginOnly Thunkable app which can be used as a template for any app you build that requires user login. Check out the updated tutorial which instructs you on how to use this template app to create your own apps.

The app uses Thunkable’s drag and drop interface, Firebase for login, and Cloudinary to store profile pics for users. You can create the app in about 30 minutes including setting up free accounts at Thunkable, Firebase, and Cloudinary.

Thunkable Book now Available!

Drag and Drop Code: Create iPhone and Androids Apps with Thunkable, is now available! Program your iPhone, iPad, or Android, no experience required!

Along with my co-author Rafiki Cai, I am pleased to announce what may be the most fun and creative introduction to coding, ever! The eBook is just $9.99, and the paperback is coming soon.

 The book steps readers through the creation of 12 apps, teaching coding fundamentals along the way, and encouraging exploration and creative remixing. Learn while creating– what a concept! 

In my USF classes, students build and install an app on their phone in the first twenty minutes of class, even before I go over the syllabus! Thunkable’s cross-platform nature makes it possible: students learning to code by building apps on their own phones.

The book, and Thunkable, are perfect for:

  • Self-directed learning and app building, both kids and adults
  • Introductory K-12 and University courses 
  • After-school coding and entrepreneurship programs
  • Informal learning pods looking for fun and creative projects
  • Family coding clubs
  • Prototyping and rapid code development  by entrepreneurs and organizations

Please help us in getting the word out!

David Wolber
Professor, University of San Francisco

Thunkable gives noncoders the ability to create professional-grade mobile apps.


More than 1.5 million mobile apps with around 16 million monthly active users have been created on Thunkable, a platform that grew out of MIT. The apps were designed to do things like educate, entertain, and turn a profit — and they were all built without writing a single line of code.

That’s because Thunkable offers an intuitive drag-and-drop system that allows noncoders to build robust mobile apps that work across Apple and Android devices. The company’s tools allow anyone to build professional-grade apps, and the results prove developers aren’t the only people with great ideas.

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