An ideal software development environment would be, among other things, reliable.
Currently, systems use tests to keep expectations and reality linked to some degree. Compilers for example, can somewhat also test the code, but only to the extent that is syntactically correct. But there are at least 3 kinds of errors: syntax, runtime and intent. The first two are familiar, the third one signals a disconnection between user expectation and running code. A bug.
I've been working for a while on what I see as The Software Engineering Problem. You know, programmers that are demotivated, project managers who are stressed, designers who are frustrated, etc. I come from a classical engineering background: Mechanical, electrical, automotive. As such, I am often taken aback by the things happening in software that would just not fly on meatworld. There's a great article on Linux Journal.
This is where the system I envision fits: connecting human expectations with computer execution, with minimal explicit human interaction. It is what robots did for Detroit: automate lower level tasks to free resources for higher level planning, with much higher quality results.
For the time being, the intent behind this prototyping UI environment is to minimize the time spent cranking functionality. This time can be cut by making for example a meta-testing program, which can collaborate with the developer to write unit tests automatically; or by making it easy to write interfaces so people with a more visual skill don't need to also know a great deal of programming or rely on someone else (and the quality of the communication between them) to write a mockup or prototype. This bit could amount for several months saved per small feature.
By focusing on human intent, computer systems can be built that are much more optimal, because the name of the problem is Human-Computer-Interaction. Much more if we are aiming for the birth of Artificial Intelligence, or the emergence of a hive mind. Previously, the idea had been to focus on the user but it seems that engineers were left behind there. "The CLIENT is who we focus on, not the lowly developer. You do what you have to do to rake in the money." Not so much.
I don't know if there's even such a place, but I'm just glad it's not really like that for me. That doesn't mean that it couldn't be improved.
Finally, "capture requirements in the user's terms, and then to try to create an implementation language as isomorphic as possible to the user's descriptions, so that the mapping between requirements and implementation is as direct as possible" --Language Oriented Programming