When Plain was at 7 people we had a pretty great development workflow for fixing bugs and deploying new features for Barley. However, with just Kyle and I — working side-by-side — we do not need our development workflow to be nearly as complex.
Last week I tied myself to my chair and refactored our development workflow and we’re really happy with the results so far. Here are just a few of the benefits:
- We went from 3 code repositories to one. Our code used to be split between the core application (API, syncing, etc.), our front-end code for the UI (Site Bar, Account Manager, various modals), and the editor (the toolset used for inline editing). Now we have a single repository which is much easier to manage and deploy.
- Our files and folders now follow a single naming convention. We had underscores in some places, dashes in others, and camelCase still in others. We went with dashes everywhere and this makes it much more simple.
- We deleted a huge amount of unused code, fonts, and libraries. Since our code was spread out over 3 separate repositories we ended up with various libraries being duplicated, a lot of test files here and there to test things locally before we ran our import process, and a bunch of other dead code from our beta period. That is all long gone now.
- We also fixed up a bunch of little niggles that were like thorns in our side. I’ll give you one example; we use Vagrant to run a local development environment. For the last two years Kyle hasn’t been able to run it and there were a few small oddities with the image that kept erring. We’ve fixed most of these and now we can get down to work without a myriad of headaches.
These are just some of the many benefits that we’ve seen from cleaning up our development workflow. We should do this once every few months.