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pipe-ist

pipe-ist

A back to basics build tool for JavaScript, TypeScript and pretty much everything else. pipe-ist aims to be good at a single part of the building process: Pipelines.

Usage

It is recommended to use pipe-ist in conjunction with NPM Scripts. If you need to run multiple commands at the same time see concurrently and for "watching" behaviour see onchange.

Design Specification

All configuration is done in a pipefile. The pipefile used in this specification looks like the following:

// pipefile.js 
var pi = require('pipe-ist');
 
pi.task('default', [
    require('compile-typescript-pipe'),
    require('move-to-bin-pipe')
]);

pipe-ist differs from other build systems in what it does not do. It does not:

It focusses on one part of the "build" process:

  • Pipelines

In the context of pipe-ist a pipeline is a series of "processes" which a file is passed through. We call each individual process a Pipe. Pipes have the opportunity to transform a file in whatever manner they like, and these changes will be reflected throughout the rest of the pipeline.

Take the example file structure:

- src/
  - main.ts
  - index.html
  - img/
    - your_face.png

And the pipefile.js references above.

In order to instantiate the task "default" we run the command piper default (it could just be piper, but we are being specific here!). This runs the task with the name "default", which is in this case our only task. It is here the "magic" begins.

Firstly, all of our files are passed through compile-typescript-pipe which yields the new file structure:

- src/
  - main.js
  - index.html
  - img/
    - your_face.png

note: The file structure is copied into memory, so nothing is persisted until the pipeline has finished running. This means that your main.ts file WILL NOT be replaced with a compiled main.js on your actual file system!

Each Pipe defines a function which will dynamically tell the pipeline runner whether or not it is fit to process a file. In this case, main.ts was eligible so was thus processed, however your_face.png and index.html were not.

Next the files are passed through move-to-bin-pipe. This results in:

- src/
- dist/
  - main.js
  - index.html
  - img/
    - your_face.png

Finally, because this is the last Pipe the virtual copies of the files are persisted into the file system. Which means that the end result for the physical file system would be:

- src/
  - main.ts
  - index.html
  - img/
    - your_face.png
- dist/
  - main.js
  - index.html
  - img/
    - your_face.png