Our journey with MEAN

PIYUESH KUMAR   |  10th September, 2014

MEAN has been around in node.js landscape for over a year now and has continued to gain substantial traction in last 6 months with an active community sprouting around it. If you are new to MEAN, let me clarify its not a new framework to build evil web applications as the name might suggest, but is an acronym made up of the base technologies its built upon.


Our journey with MEAN started with a project request that needed highly realtime elements and a very rich UI, at this point of time we had built couple of webapps using early versions of express and wanted to scout whats new out there and found MEAN; an excellent starting point for our app. One of the reasons we selected MEAN was for the perfect combination of technologies we wanted to use -- Mongo as a database, Angular as our front end framework and Express/Node to handle our server side code. One of the things that sustained our faith in MEAN was quick response from the MEAN community on github issues which also pushed us to contribute our fixes to mean core. The first Pull Request that got accepted was the simple "Forgot you password email" followed by code style changes to mean core, we found the responses on the issue really encouraging and was acknowledged by community by awarding MEAN Ninja of the month to our own Pratik Bothra. 

Around the same time MEAN was changing and had a major refactoring around packages, similar to modules/plugins on your favorite framework, this also introduced MEAN cli that made it even more attractive to us. Talking to Lior (Founder of MEAN), we soon saw the vision around packages and had quite a few things which could be contributed from the app we were building. Our first package was comments, that allows developers to enable comments on models with little tweaks. To use the package just install it using mean-cli:

npm install -g meanio
mean install comments

and follow the instructions on the example page & README file. The story continued and we soon followed it up with image-cropping package. This package allows developers to enable image cropping in their application in multiple ways both on client end & server end. Also, it saves the file to a destination directory as required. You can install it by:

mean install crop

There is tons of help in the README to setup cropping as per your taste. 

MEAN Packages are growing every day and there are packages for admin dashboard, translation support, upload, sockets and many more, there are substancial improvements planned for MEAN CLI and mean core as well. So, don't stay back! If you are node.js developer looking for a rapid framework to build realtime, peformant applications checkout MEAN and join the community.  As for us, our journey has been very rewarding and without a doubt will bring in more excitement and challenges in future.

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