toolchain

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A toolchain is how web development is often made far more complicated than necessary (most toolchains are targeted at enterprises or large dev teams, you can start with simple HTML+CSS+JS and a text editor instead), scaring away all but the most privileged from venturing into web development.

See Also

Comic with two panes, first a protagonist eagerly declaring they will start a short simple project, second an unknown time later the protagonist is overwhelmed by a plethora of tools, frameworks, technologies

  • JavaScript
  • 2016: https://medium.freecodecamp.org/making-sense-of-front-end-build-tools-3a1b3a87043b
  • 2016-05-01 Let's Make JavaScript Development Simple Again!
    I believe that the JavaScript community currently favors an intimidatingly complex toolchain. What I loved about JavaScript was its simplicity. But in 2016, hardly anything a JavaScript developer does can be called "simple".
  • Solution to avoiding complex (JS) toolchains: (Unknown date, likely sometime 2016): You (probably) don't need a JavaScript framework
  • 2016-04-11 Why Javascript Development is Crazy
    The state of Javascript development is overwhelming and confusing because everyone is overengineering their apps by default without even realizing it.
  • 2016-03-14 The Deep Roots of Javascript Fatigue
    …with all the Javascript churn there’s really no right horse to bet on. You either have to continually change your tech stack to keep up with the times, or be content with the horse you’ve got.
  • 2015-12-26 Javascript Fatigue
    Ultimately, the problem is that by choosing React (and inherently JSX), you’ve unwittingly opted into a confusing nest of build tools, boilerplate, linters, & time-sinks to deal with before you ever get to create anything.
  • You Might Not Need a Toolchain (reactjs.org)
  • Criticism: https://twitter.com/SeanTAllen/status/1163557601067634690
    • "Modern software tooling is amazing. I can go from zero to working thing that I don't understand at all and have zero chance of debugging in a timely fashion quicker than you can say "thank god I don't have to support this thing"." @SeanTAllen August 19, 2019
  • Criticism: complexity, outsourced agency, brittleness: 2019-10-26 Everything is Amazing, But Nothing is Ours
    That’s the software playbook: find a system made of costly, redundant objects; and rearrange it into a fast, frictionless system made of logical dependencies. The delta in performance is irresistible, and dependencies are a compelling building block: they seem like just a piece of logic, with no cost and no friction. But they absolutely have a cost: the cost is complexity, outsourced agency, and brittleness. The cost of ownership is up front and visible; the cost of access is back-dated and hidden.