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JL Flores Mena
Posted Jul 22 - Read on Facebook

Framer is becoming the biggest game changer I've seen in a long time. It might not be widely used by designers, but the impact is having in more experienced/dedicated groups is huge.
I have never considered myself a programmer, but I do enjoy struggling with code. The progress that I've made with Coffeescript is 100% thanks to Framer. So when I refer to Framer as a game changer, it's not only about changing the way we work, but also the way we learn.

On that note, I have a question/request: Are there plans to have a version that is focused on using plain Javascript instead of Coffeescript? I have friends who are trying to make the jump from design into interaction design, and Framer is an amazing tool to help designers (or visual thinkers) get into code. But at the same time, if they want to apply their newly gained knowledge (ie, in Front-End/web development), they have to 'unlearn' some of that Coffeescript flavor.

In my case, Framer got me into reading about Javascript, and I'm reading Eric Elliot a lot; I'd like to have a tool like Framer to experiment with some of his ES6 (or ES5) examples.

Sorry for the long post!

TLDR: What about having a 'Framer Edu' version focused on being a playground to learn plain Javascript.

14 Comments

Benjamin Den Boer

Hey JL Flores Mena - thanks for your feedback and thoughts. I'm glad to hear you're enjoying Framer! Improving how people get started with Framer, and how we can help them pick up coding/scripting principles is definitely something we're always considering. ES6 is looking very promising. Maintaining a balance between ease-of-use and flexibility is key - and ES6 brings a lot to the table. Again, this is helpful - appreciate your feedback!

Mike Kotsch

Love the expression "I do enjoy struggling with code" – perfect. I guess I'm going to steal that, if it's okay with you.

Jordan Robert Dobson

Can't you just use Javascript inside coffeescript pretty reliably?

I haven't verified this but I always assumed you could.

George Kedenburg III
George Kedenburg III

Also, JL why would they have to unlearn any of their coffeescript knowledge to apply what they learned in Framer to other front end development? There's nothing stopping them from using coffeescript on a regular website :)

Ben Adam

I would be really stoked if there was an ES6 option that I could toggle instead of Coffeescript

Jordan Robert Dobson

George - I know about that very well. I just assumed you could just write JS formatted code in coffee script just fine. I know I've done it in small amounts before.

But agreed! My team at Groupon used coffeescript for all our modules we built!

JL Flores Mena

Sure Mike, go ahead! Thanks for that link George, this helps a lot.
And about the 'unlearn Coffeescript' thing, is not that simple for someone who is just starting out, since almost every framework out there is based in plain JS (ie. jquery, backbone, react, parse api). Obviously, that's part of the job, but maybe it could be simpler to give them the choice to use JS in the editor.

Jordan Robert Dobson

I don't really think framer should be done with a JS option... The whole point is approachability and simplicity for designers. Any developer approach coffeescript will have an easy time translating previous knowledge. JS just removes that simplicity. The documentation doubles... There are plenty side affects to supporting something like this. As a product designer I would punt this and focus on much cooler things.

Stephen Crowley

Agree with Jordan. My biggest reason for using Framer is the how well it fits in with the iterative design process. Less friction than other tools. If you are focusing on implementation that takes away from exploring more viable concepts for what you are originally trying to solve. I remember when Koen, Ben and Jorn were deciding whether to move from JavaScript to CoffeeScript focused and the deciding factor was simplicity. It's a good choice. Good point on flexibility vs simplicity

JL Flores Mena

Hey Jordan Stephen, yeah I wouldn't remove Coffeescript from Framer to go only-JS, maybe I didn't do a good job explaining myself.
My point is, Framer offers a great environment for designers and visual-thinkers to get into code, there's a huge opportunity from an educational perspective for Framer to become the best tool to learn and apply JS. This is not about implementation, is more about helping people who know absolutely nothing about code. But yeah, I know this is something totally different than what the current Framer goal is.

Jordan Robert Dobson

No. I understood. I guess I just see a lot of holes for even JS users. I would say something more like Treehouse would be better for learning JS. I have an account I can add you to for free if you want.

Jordan Robert Dobson

JL Flores Mena I looked into this a bit for you on Friday and found that you can use JavaScript in Framer you just have to put `...` wrapped around your code in coffee script.

That said, the only reason currently I could see that you need it is to use the function word to create named and anonymous functions.

Otherwise I was able to write most other JS without it.

I hope this helps in your JS experiments.

JL Flores Mena

Hey Jordan sorry for the long delay in replying, thanks for that tip I'll check today how it works!

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