Well hello there – it’s been a while, hasn’t it? Checking back through my posts, the last time I wrote about my coding work was back in February of last year, just before all this (gesticulates wildly to the world at large) nonsense kicked off.

I’ve been keeping my head low since then for a number of reasons, mainly having to adjust to being at home pretty much 24/7, but also because I’ve been finding my feet in a new role away from the University of Lincoln, working for Lincolnshire based digital agency Laser Red. It’s been a bit of a change moving away from the world of research and library information systems, but I’ve been working with some great developers and have picked up some new skills along the way.

One I wanted to chat about today is a change to the way I handle asset building. Yes, yes, I know – I wrote a whole bunch of posts a couple of years back talking about how to set up Gulp to build JS and CSS for web apps – well, it’s time to chuck that in the bin and move along because Laravel Mix is now a part of my toolbox and it’s very much here to stay.

Whereas Gulp required a bunch of disparate modules to do simple tasks and could be fiddly to set up, often breaking horribly between versions, Mix is far more lightweight and easy to get up and running in minutes. Now, normally I’d go into more detail with a walkthrough at this point, but the documentation on the Mix website for getting started is so concise there’s really no point. Go give it a read.

Still want more? Here’s an upgrade to the Node.is project starter I wrote a few years back that uses Mix instead of Gulp as its asset builder. See how more streamlined it is? Using Mix opens up a bunch of opportunities for front end work including compiling specifically for production with ease, as well as implementing modern PostCSS frameworks like Tailwind.

So there we go – I guess I’m back writing blog posts and not just movie and videogame reviews (although I’ve done a fair few of those over the past year if you want to go and give them a read) – as always, spark up in the comments if you have any questions and keep your eye on here. I’m planning on doing some regular code tinkering again and will be certainly sharing my work!