The Slog A development blog by Liam Siira

Aura: A new project

- Posted in aura

I've started working on a smaller much smaller version of Atheos called Aura; I'll still primarily work on Atheos when I can, but I want to try to make Atheos even lighter than what it is.

I've always loved how powerful and content filled old game cartridges used to be for how small that they are. I think it's a sign of a great programmer if they can keep a powerful software's size small and focused.

Embarrassingly, even though I've cut out a TON of extra code from Codiad in creating Atheos, Codiad's last release size is zipped at 2.3Mb, while Atheos' is currently at 4.4Mb. I know most of that size is due to adding the font files directly to the source, namely FontAwesome. Yes, I am honestly embarrassed that Atheos has grown so much, even though none of the growth has been unjustified.

Here's where Aura comes in. I use Atheos to code Atheos, and if I break a key component, I used to have to ssh in and undo the typo that broke everything in order to continue. After doing this one too many times, I added TinyFileManager to my server. It's been a life saver and looking at the code, it's pretty powerful, but it has an extremely high number of requests to dependencies on load in my opinion. While it is a single file, it requests several files from BootStrap, Ace Editor, jQuery, and a few other places.

I also recently discovered CodeJar, which I think might the coolest thing I've seen in a while, and LoLight, a very tiny but pretty convincing syntax highlighter.

Using CodeJar, and LoLight, I could feasibly remove Ace Editor from Atheos; using a custom font file like Tiny File Manager does, I could remove Font Awesome's massive size and by removing some non-critical components, I could easily make a pretty powerful and even smaller form IDE to use as a backup to Atheos.

If I can get Aura to work fairly similarly to Atheos, I can eventually merge the two and potentially get the best of both worlds later on down the line.

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