The EquaMetrics company has announced a new product called RIZM which is a “visual programming” platform for trading systems (or algos, as they are known). This looks really cool, but I am skeptical. The idea is that you can “visually design complex trading strategies without a single line of code” according to the product literature.
We know how complex trading algorithms can be, and that a huge amount of testing and parameter tuning is required to make a system backtest well enough to trade with in a live account. Can that be done without code?
When Microsoft first released Visual Basic, there was a big concern among programmers that they (we) were becoming obsolete. I mean, if anyone could create a program by moving blocks around on the screen, who needs programmers? It turned out that the best Visual programmers were exactly that — programmers. The developers who already understood program structure, logical organized thinking, how to connect program modules together, and how to properly test software. Many things you couldn’t do with just visual blocks on the screen; you had to get behind the blocks and get into the code.
I suspect the same might be true about RIZM. It might be a way to get into algo programming, but the best visual algo programmers will be the algo programmers who already understand coding for trading systems, and the same programmers would probably just prefer to write code.
We’ll see. I may sign up for an account to get a first-hand view of the platform.