Webpack from Nothing: WTF is a Webpack?

October 02, 2017 📬 Get My Weekly Newsletter

In writing my latest book, I struggled with the JavaScript module bundler ecosystem, in particular Webpack. There are many (many) blog posts telling you how to set it up that all amount to “Don’t ask questions, just put this JSON in your project.” I hate that. I need to know why things work and what is required to get something to function.

So, I started from nothing, and added Webpack and its various friends only when my project had a real problem to solve. I was surprised just how little configuration was required, but also how painful it was, how broken the abstractions, and how terribly integrated the tools in the JavaScript ecosystem are.

Join me on the journey and you will learn a lot about Webpack, JavaScript, and why it can be so frustrating to live in this ecosystem.

During your journey through this site, you’ll use Webpack, Karma, Jasmine, Babel, and many different plugins and extensions, all to get a very basic development environment working. There will be little handwaving. We’ll add tools and configuration only when needed to solve a specific problem.