Minimize your Javascript files with cURL


I’ve always been fascinated by the power of using existing web applications as external tools: you don’t need to install anything on your computer but you can rely on the web.

We can externalize the intelligence of applications in servers and easily make updates, while having any terminal consuming them with a minimal OS environment.
Cloud or whatever you call it, it’s awesome.

WOA is our common architecture for making applications. Clients of web servers can be anything you want, not only desktop browsers, but also mobiles, tablets, other web services, and… command-line!

And today, as an example, we will use Google Closure Compiler web service to minimize a Javascript file with only cURL.

cURL is a CLI swiss army knife of transferring data and it is perfect for testing, debugging and consuming web services.

Google Closure Compiler check and “compile” your Javascript file. By compile, it means optimizing its size by renaming variables and removing spaces and comments. Javascript compilation has because an essential phase of major javascript libraries.

Bash script examples

Download and minimize the last version of Illuminated.js

curl -d compilation_level=SIMPLE_OPTIMIZATIONS -d output_format=text -d output_info=compiled_code -d code_url=$URL > $OUTPUT

Minimize a local JS file

curl -d compilation_level=SIMPLE_OPTIMIZATIONS -d output_format=text -d output_info=compiled_code --data-urlencode "js_code@${LOCAL_FILE}" > $OUTPUT
As a generative plotter artist, I use code to generate art (creative coding) and physically create it with pen plotters, which is itself a generative process – each physical plot is a unique variant. I love dualities, like digital vs analog physical, abstract vs figurative, orthogonal vs polar, photo vs noise,...