App sharing and developer apps are different things. Only you can see development apps see whereas shared apps other users can see & interact with.
It’s close to dev apps, but the use case is different because other folks’ can see/boot those apps so they should be stable. Beyond that - it’s a symlink to a different location (or at least should be).
Dev mode allows you to edit your development applications, because ultimately the files are in your $HOME.
The word sandbox here is appropriate - you will not edit the system configurations, you’ll only edit your own development apps that are in your $HOME. The system configs in /etc/ood/config need privilege escalation (root) to edit which you don’t have in a PUN (per user nginx).
Now if one of those sandbox applications is the dashboard (the main OnDemand application) you can find yourself in a little bit of a mental maze, but the edits you make in your $HOME only affect your sandbox application - they can’t impact the system configurations in /etc/ood/config for your own system installed dashboard or other users’ system installed dashboard.
Thanks for your help Jeff, and I love the new documentation that has been added for developing passenger and interactive apps. I just completed my first passenger app through the tutorial you have, and it has me excited to learn rails and how this whole OOD ecosystem works.