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BareBones Template

The BareBones template is my starting point for new projects. It provides a
great setup for frontend technology and can be plugged in with any backend
quickly. My instructions will be based on a unix operating system as it’s what
I know.


  • jQuery – Because it’s so useful.
  • AngularJS – Because it’s the future of data-driven
    front-end frameworks.
  • CoffeeScript – Because it makes writing all
    things JavaScript easier.
  • Twitter Bootstrap – For quick scaffolding.
  • SASS – Making writing CSS less painful.
  • Compass – Making compiling SASS super easy.
  • Bourbon – Great mixins for SASS.
  • Middleman – Tool to build all files and compile
    for production.

Getting Setup

First off make sure you have ruby installed:

sudo apt-get install ruby-full rubygems1.8

Also make sure you have nodeJS and NPM installed:

sudo apt-get install -y python-software-properties
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chris-lea/node.js
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install nodejs

Ensure you have middleman gem installed:

sudo gem install middleman

Ensure you have bower installed:

sudo npm install -g bower

Setup this repo as a template:

git clone ~/.middleman/barebones

Go to your projects directory and create a middleman project:

middleman init PROJECT_NAME --template=barebones

Change into your new project:


Install Bower assets:

bower install

You’re good to go!


In some cases I’ve found that the bundler doesn’t properly set middleman up in
the new project. If this is the case follow the instructions and do the

bundle update

If you are having trouble running middleman COMMAND try:

bundle exec middleman COMMAND

Working With this Project

Once it’s setup, you’re good to start working. This setup will allow you to
work on a server that live reloads as you make changes to your source files.
To get the server running, do the following:

bundle exec middleman server

This will create a server instance on Navigate to that
URL and you have the website setup properly. You should now edit files in the
source directory. When you are finished editing and want to get the production
files together, do the following:

bundle exec middleman build

This creates your build directory and updates all files for shipping to

Enjoy the streamlined front-end life!

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