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What is Craft Code?

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, 739 words, 4th grade

Craft code is code made with care, skill, and ingenuity.

In a world of mass-produced, mediocre, commodity code, Craft Code celebrates elegant, bespoke, hand-crafted, state-of-the-art code. With it we build web applications and websites that are usable, accessible, performant, and sustainable.

This is not for everyone.

The essentials of Craft Code

There are many aspects to the Craft Code approach. Here we focus on front-end web development, but these principles apply across all coding. Among the most important are:

1. Put quality before quantity

Many devs spend almost all their time cranking out commodity code. We are in a huge rush to deliver. Often we do not stop to ask, Do we really need this item? Is this truly the right way to go?

Craft Code asks, whereʼs the fire? We assert that slow and steady wins the race. Write excellent code; write it once.

2. Do not needlessly multiply entities

William of Ockham was a genius. His famous dictum — do not needlessly multiply entities — applies to an enormous range of human endeavors.

Craft Code favors solutions that are as simple as practicable, but no simpler.

Add only features you need. Add them precisely when you need them, no sooner. Avoid hasty abstractions. Keep dependencies to a bare minimum, zero if possible. In short, never write a line of code until you must.

Thatʼs the Craft Code way.

3. Write bespoke code

One-size-fits-all fits none very well. Make it to measure. Consider, for example, a component library. Most of the code is there to allow the library to do things that you will never need.

By comparison, bespoke code is quite efficient. You code only what you need. If you need more, you code more. Exactly when you need it. Easy peasy.

Your code is still re-usable, but it remains clean and lean. You know every line of it.

4. Embrace a comprehensive approach

There is so much more to a web application than coding up features.

There is user experience. There is performance. There is accessibility, of course. To everyone. There is sustainability and carbon footprint. Craft Code is a holistic approach to coding that considers all these aspects.

This site is currently MVP. But there is so much more coming soon! That includes an entire section on sustainable web development. And soon after, two sister sites.

What Craft Code is not

Craft Code is not old fashioned code. We are not re-creating your Dadʼs 1990s web page. Quite the reverse: Craft Code embraces best practices and state-of-the-art technology. It builds on decades of painful learnings.

Craft Code is not terse, “clever”, or prematurely-optimized code. We strive for simplicity and balance: every line of code must exist for a reason. Nothing extra; nothing missing. But all eminently comprehensible.

Craft Code is not “Baroque Code” or “Rococo Code”. We do not mean craft as in ornamentation. Craft Code is clean, elegant, orderly, uncluttered.

In short, Craft Code stands on the shoulders of giants.

We provide resources to help you

The site aims to become your one-stop shop for all things Craft Code. To that end, we provide you with the following:

Essays about Craft Coding

We post regular essays in one of four categories of abstraction.

The least abstract are discussions about code and coding practices. Somewhat more abstract are essays on connections: APIs, networking, etc. In short, the tendons of web work.

A bit further up the abstraction scale are articles on context, such as guiding principles. And at the top: critiques of current practice.

Links to related pages

Essays about code. Essays about connection. Essays about context. Critiques of coding practices.

Fundamental Craft Code methods

You may also wish to consult our eight essential methods. It is far from a complete list, but these eight are among our favorites.

Of course, others have covered these and more time and again. But we are happy to lend them further credence here.

Links to related pages

Make it sustainable. Keep it simple. Plan properly. Use the least power. Code just in time. Do it right the first time. Make intentions clear. Minimize cognitive footprint.

Axioms that form the foundation of Craft Code

Axioms are self-evident truths that require no proof. These are our axioms; they form the basis upon which we founded Craft Code.

Links to related pages

Less is more. Bespoke is better. Configuration is tedious. Craft is its own reward.

Join us!

Are you a Craft Coder or do you want to become one? Use our join form to get involved. Whether you want to lurk or jump right in, everyone is welcome.

But please: no trolls, spammers, haters. The world is bleak enough already.

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