Pug (formerly Jade), in the browser?


Over at Oasis Digital Angular Boot Camp, we teach Angular 2+ using tooling that operates entirely in the browser. It compiles TypeScript to JavaScript, it processes a module system, etc. This works very well, and makes for a fast, easy setup and edit/run cycle during class. Great stuff. (We also teach the use of heavier duty server-side tooling like Angular CLI; but CLI is still short of the convenience in-browser tooling.)

I recently wondered whether might be possible to support some of the other tools we use, in the browser. Many useful tools in the JavaScript development ecosystem (including Babel, TypeScript, and many others) are implemented such that they can execute in either a browser environment or in a server (node) environment. This appears to not be a great technical challenge, for projects intended to work this way. The aspects which require node APIs (such as talking to the file system) are simply implemented and wired up separately from the core functionality – which is “just JavaScript”.

Unfortunately, this plan didn’t get very far: the tool I wanted to add next is Pug (formally known as Jade). Pug is currently implemented using Node APIs scattered throughout the code base, rather than in a universal node/browser way. I noticed an open issue asking about this, but it appears there is not interest in achieving such a thing.

Browsing around the Pug code base, it appears would be a moderate amount of work to reshape things to make this possible; but it would involve small changes widely scattered around the code. That kind of change is generally frowned on the project unless there user and developer eagerness for the feature in question. Therefore, I am curious, readers of my blog: is there much interest out there, enough for someone to consider maintaining a fork of Pug converted to universal JavaScript? Or a wrapper/shim around it, to stub Node APIs sufficiently for Pug to operate in the browser?