11 September 2012


A new tool for front-end devs


Myself, Neil Kinnish and Pete Nelson are working on a new app aimed squarely at front-end developers and designers. It’s called Mixture. It enables you to develop in an environment that’s totally dynamic without having any server-side environment set up on your machine.

Neil has put together a quick and dirty screen cast to show you mixture in action.

Here’s a run down of the main benefits of Mixture:

1. A powerful local front-end development environment (quick & easy to setup, no knowledge of server-side environments needed).

2. Works on Mac or Windows and allows you to open & share projects between machines.

3. Use your editor of choice (TextMate, VIM, Sublime Text).

4. Live updates; changes are displayed live in the browser.

5. Dynamic templating (layouts / partials / includes).

6. Handles Sass, Less & Coffee script and will warn you of any issues.

7. One click push online, share, collaborate and sign-off.

8. Boilerplates / Project templates allow you to get started quickly. You can also create and share your own.

9. Add to-do comments within your code right where they matter, Mixture will automatically pull and list so as you always know what needs your attention.

10. Json models allow you to test and structure data around your templates.

We’re working on getting a preview version out very soon. We’ll keep you posted!

We’d love to hear what you think!


  1. Arush Sehgal

    11 September 2012 | 4:31 pm

    Looks like a local version of jsfiddle, very cool. Can we choose whatever frameworks we want?

  2. Avangelist

    11 September 2012 | 4:47 pm

    as with ye olde WorkFu, I’ll be happy to do some testing and playing.

    Is this running…. air?

  3. mikekus

    11 September 2012 | 5:35 pm

    Hi Andy, It’s a native app. We’ll let you know when the preview is out. :)

  4. mikekus

    11 September 2012 | 5:37 pm

    Arush, thanks for the comment. It’s very different from jsfiddle :)

  5. Adam

    11 September 2012 | 5:47 pm

    This sounds like something I would definitely use! As a designer/coder live updates are now a must. It’s usually paper to styles for me.

    To do comments is a great idea. Please make sure you have an Espresso like feature to color-code the way we like.

    Any design needs, give me a shout. I would be happy to help!

  6. Jay Kanakiya

    11 September 2012 | 6:12 pm

    Great project.now you can Say goodbye to Ctrl+R

  7. Tom Ashworth

    11 September 2012 | 6:35 pm

    Hi Mike, seems pretty cool – just for doing client side work, right? Not quite seeing the purpose of the ‘models’ just yet.

    I don’t mean to be really negative, but you lost my trust somewhat with WorkFu – what’s to say you won’t work on this for a while and then drop it in 6 months? Or will it be open source?

  8. Jesse

    11 September 2012 | 7:19 pm

    You had me at “live.” I am very interested in this project, can you get a landing page up with a “subscribe to notify” page?

    Also, dream feature of mine – I work with a lot of content editors – would there be a way to point to a folder of md files (say, local Dropbox) and allow for more realistic content than “lorem ipsum” for the dev projects? Also, since you’re seemingly doing a live compile, any way to do a “zip the site” feature where I can send it off for review? The beauty of the pseudo static site builders…

    Thanks for making such great tools. Also, my first time here – cool logo. :)

  9. Rik

    11 September 2012 | 7:30 pm

    Looks awesome – any limitations on project type?

  10. Julie Ng

    11 September 2012 | 8:07 pm

    Interesting project and curious to see how it will work out for your guys.

    I’m a bit skeptic because something already exists that does that: middlemanapp.com – more code but also more customizable. While I think it’s neat to have an “app” that does it for you, I personally think it’s better for devs to do some by hand and not rely on programs and frameworks without knowing how they work. Also I suspect that an audience that uses SASS, LESS and Coffeescript is comfortable with the command line and pushing to their own git repos/sites.

    Just my two cents.

    Nevertheless good luck withe project.

  11. Neil Kinnish

    11 September 2012 | 9:07 pm

    @julie ng

    Hi Julie,

    Thanks for your comment…

    Yes lots of cool tools out there, ultimately you should use what you are most comfortable with and enjoy using & learning.

    We believe Mixture just makes it quick and easy to get started building templates on Mac or Windows and has some nice features to boot. We are looking to add online features to help users and promote collaboration.

    Not everyone uses the command line or is even comfortable with it and not every language relies on the command line to setup or work on projects.

    Piecing all of these technologies together can be time consuming and difficult and sometimes you just want to get on with a project.

    As a team we have experience across many languages and disciplines, but Mixture is still a tool we desired.

    You still write all the code and still have to have the necessary knowledge. If you use GIT you can still use the command line ;)

    Hope this helps explain why we are building the app.



  12. mikekus

    11 September 2012 | 9:15 pm

    @Tom Ashworth

    Thanks for the comment!

    I’m sorry you feel there’s a trust issue here but sometimes projects just don’t make it. We put in 1000′s of hours of work into WorkFu and didn’t take the decision to shut it down, lightly.

    Projects like Instagram and even Twitter have been born out of failed projects or companies. It’s a hard decision but sometimes you have to make it and move on.

    The good news is that we learnt a lot from WorkFu that we can take forward and apply to future projects.

  13. Chris Wharton

    12 September 2012 | 9:28 am

    I’ve been lucky enough to have a quick sneak preview of this and I’m very excited to see the beta release as I can’t wait to get stuck in and put it through its paces!

    As someone who designs and codes I’m always looking for low overheads in terms of setup. Sometimes I just don’t need to know how to install homebrew or ruby or the next big thing, I just want to concentrate on bringing my design into an application with raw HTML/CSS. I think this app has a huge potential for collaborative team working – especially those who work remotely.

  14. Kev

    12 September 2012 | 8:41 pm

    Sounds very interesting – you’re right about discomfort with command line. Is there an ‘official’ twitter account or email list or whatever to keep up to date with where you are with this?

  15. Ashutosh Singh

    12 September 2012 | 11:48 pm

    Does Mixture work with Aptana? I will love to use it with Aptana

  16. Laura Lock

    13 September 2012 | 1:42 am

    This looks amazing, and fun, and awesome. I love everything, the fact that there bootstraps included (and the option of creating and adding your own), and also the inclusion of LESS etc, is just awesome!

    A one stop shop app, of sorts!

    Can’t wait to try this out! Awesome work guys.

  17. Daivd Huosãr

    13 September 2012 | 1:56 am

    Really keen to try this one out – how do we know when the preview’s released?

  18. Keegan Street

    13 September 2012 | 1:56 am

    Hey, what’s the difference between this and Middleman? What language do developers use for writing dynamic partials? Is it also Ruby or something else?

  19. ulrich

    13 September 2012 | 2:10 am

    is there any sane reason why there’s no linux version?

  20. James

    13 September 2012 | 10:06 am

    Great stuff guys.

    I agree with Chris Wharton about collaborations. This could be a very powerful tool. The online/community aspect could also be great for feedback on projects/templates etc. I think what Mixture will offer is speed for the designer who codes.

  21. Neil Kinnish

    13 September 2012 | 10:57 am

    @Keegan Street

    Hi Keegan,

    There are a few differences, but Middleman and others are very cool tools.

    With Mixture we are trying to make the process super simple and work the same across Mac + Windows (you can open the same project on either machine).

    We are also adding in some unique features and a whole online side. Will keep you posted with more information.



  22. Neil Kinnish

    13 September 2012 | 10:58 am


    It’s simply time and resource at the moment, we are a small team. But will look into that as soon as we can :)

  23. Neil Kinnish

    13 September 2012 | 10:59 am

    @Daivd Huosãr

    We will keep you updated, best way to stay informed is to follow one / all of us on Twitter until we launch the site and all.

    @neiltak, @petetak or @mikekus

  24. Ram Ratan Maurya

    13 September 2012 | 11:46 am

    Great work Neil. That’s really awesome, I’d like to get my hands dirty on it. Hope you guys finish it off soon.

  25. Luis Martins

    13 September 2012 | 9:41 pm

    Wow, sounds really cool.
    Now i can’t wait to get my hands on it ;-)

  26. monkviper

    14 September 2012 | 6:14 am

    Nice Guys! Great Work.

  27. Ollie Wells

    14 September 2012 | 8:51 am

    Finally a cross OS rapid prototyping solution. I think this is definitely going to be one to watch. Can’t wait to get playing.


  28. James Richards

    17 September 2012 | 4:51 pm

    Looks fantastic. Would be nice if “to do” items had a small “jump to” button to take you directly to the comment within the project.


  29. Jelmer

    17 September 2012 | 7:12 pm

    Very nice!

    A cross-OS solution with a GUI finally seems to be coming. And +1 for the “Jump to” button idea. :)


  30. Neil Kinnish

    17 September 2012 | 7:58 pm

    @James Richards

    It may just do that :-)

  31. Yotam

    19 September 2012 | 3:30 pm

    Looks great!
    I’m ready, tell me where to go?

  32. Ruben Rojas

    20 September 2012 | 4:17 pm

    I like this tools, that accelerates the process of create web projects.

  33. matsaukeo

    01 October 2012 | 10:43 am

    This sounds very interesting – especially from someone on windows who keeps seeing really great mac only apps.

  34. Link Dump – October 5, 2012 Edition | Wern Ancheta

    05 October 2012 | 2:38 pm

    [...] SourceURL: http://mikekus.com/archive/a-new-tool-for-front-end-devs/ [...]

  35. Subash

    06 October 2012 | 2:28 am

    Looks cool for a windows guy who only sees mouthful of mac only apps.
    I am gonna buy it.
    Please let me know if you have a sneak peak of this.
    Don’t you have any landing page or subscription page ????

  36. Subash

    06 October 2012 | 2:30 am

    Heck i think akismet did something funny to my comment.

  37. Goobernutz

    20 October 2012 | 11:47 am

    I love how you indent with 4 spaces instead of 2. SOOO much more readable that way. I’ll never understand why people want to squish everything up to the left margin with only 2 spaces. It’s madness. Madness I tells ya!

  38. Barney

    22 March 2013 | 1:01 pm

    I’m wondering, have you got plans for pricing for this tool? The tool looks great from what I can see from the demo vid, but I’m on a pretty limited budget.

  39. Paulista

    10 April 2013 | 2:23 am

    Very nice!
    I was looking for download while listenning the video, but get a bit sad when heard it’s still in development.
    Lol…this preview was mean of you!

    Well, tnks a lot for your time and good work!

    Plz, if you will mail ppl when it’s done and ready to download, email me!
    I’d love that!


  40. Michael Lajlev

    26 June 2013 | 7:45 am

    Middleman FTW

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