William Mora

Angular Espresso - AngularJS, CoffeeScript and Express

UPDATE: This post is now outdated. Check out the project’s git page for the latest info on Angular Espresso.

AngularJS is a powerful framework maintained by Google. I started playing around with it a few weeks ago and I think it is great for developing web apps. If you are a used to using jQuery for DOM manipulation and/or your views’ logic, you’ll have to change your approach and change the way you write dynamic views. Best of all, AngularJS is more than that: you could also have models, controllers, services and use partial views to develop a true, behavior-driven web app.

The AngularJS team has an angular-seed project that is very useful as a starting point for an AnglarJS app. There’s also an extension of that project that integrates Express with AngularJS.

Both of those projects are great. Based on them, I created a starting point for an AngularJS project, powered by Node.js and Express at the backend, all written in CoffeeScript. The result is Angular Espresso.

Besides rewriting some of the angular-seed project in CoffeeScript, I included a more complete template that hopefully serves as a starting point for some powerful web apps. Some of its key points are:

Once you download the project, you’ll need to install the dependencies with npm and build/run the project using its Cakefile. Take a look at the project’s documentation for more info. Long story short, the app folder contains all .coffee files. Each folder has a README file with a brief description. It compiles into a module called .espresso that it is run by the top-level app file. All client .js files are uglified using UglifyJS.

In the future I’d like to add some kind of Model support for the server (Mongoose, maybe?) as well as testing support (probably Mocha).

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