Marigold v1.14.0

An 80/20 solution to the problem of managing front-end projects.

# install, setup, and use marigold
npm install --save-dev marigold-build
echo "require('marigold-build').defaultSetup();" > gulpfile.js
Getting Started


Take as little or as much of it as you want, it integrates directly into existing Gulp-based workflows.

† To use this feature on Windows with PowerShell, you will need to install OpenSSL (one possible source of binaries on Windows is Shining Light Productions). This feature should work fine on Windows with Git Bash, as Git Bash runs on MINGW which has a copy of OpenSSL built in.

†† Other systems could be used, so long as they fit into a Gulp workflow. These are just the ones I've built and tested for my own projects. Feature requests accepted here. Contributors also accepted.


I got sick of copy-pasta-ing gulpfile.js and chunks of package.json around to new projects. Copy-pasta is a sign of bad engineering practice. Also, my Gulpfiles were starting to get unwieldy, but breaking them out into modules just over-complicated the copy-pasta. So I started treating my build process as a project itself.

Through the process of maintaining my build process as a separate project unto itself, I have found that I can more easily keep the build clean and organized, make changes to the build that provide a clear path to upgrade for all consuming projects, and more rapidly test and release new projects thanks to not having to regrow a new build process for every new project.

The decision to release this as a public project came after spending a lot of time with beginners in the Node and JavaScript platform who wanted to do mostly the same stuff as me, but couldn't or didn't have the time to warp their heads around Gulp, Rollup, Babel, and whatever else is going on.

Getting Started

Marigold requires that you have a valid Node.js installation on your system, with NPM (installed by default when installing Node.js) as your package manager, with their associate executables available on your system PATH, so they may be executed from your CLI.

We've not tested Marigold against a lot of different versions of Node.js. We use the latest version we can, but there isn't any reason it shouldn't work with Node 6.x.x. If there are issues, please let us know and we will fix it immediately.

Node.js Beginners

Setup a new project

If you're starting a brand new project:

mkdir my-project
cd my-project
npm init
# only necessary if you've never worked with Gulp before
sudo npm install --global gulp-cli
NOTE: `sudo` is not necessary on Windows.

At this point, the NPM tool will walk you through setting up a package.json file. The values they ask for will be personal to your project. They are easy to change later, so don't fret too much about taking the default values.

You probably want a copy of this .gitignore file in your project root directory.

Everyone Else

Install Marigold

Once you have a package.json file, execute the following:

npm install --save-dev marigold-build

Create a few test files

mkdir src
echo "alert('Hello, World.');" > src/index.js
echo "body" > style.styl
echo "  font-family sans-serif" >> style.styl
echo "script(src='new-project' + jsExt)" > index.pug
echo "script(src='style' + cssExt)" >> index.pug
echo "h1 Hello, world." >> index.pug
# put this snippet at the end of all of your top-level pug templates
echo "!= liveReload" >> index.pug

Write a gulpfile.js

Marigold is built on top of Gulp. If you know Gulp, you can integrate Marigold alongside your existing build process. If you do not know Gulp, Marigold simplifies many common tasks for you, as Gulp may be a fine task runner, but very far from a build system.

Super-simple--but very constrained--default setup

If all you want is one src directory for JavaScript and a Pug and Stylus templates in the root directory, this can all be simplified down to:


A more realistic scenario

You'll probably want access to Gulp to be able to make your own tasks, as well as process more complex scenarios of JS files, like multiple bundles of different formats or different purposes. The default setup from the previous block ends up creating something very similar to the following. See APPENDIX: Example gulpfile.js for more information on what each call does.

var gulp = require("gulp"),
  pkg = require("./package.json"),
  marigold = require("marigold-build").setup(gulp, pkg),
  js = marigold.js({
    entry: "src/index.js",
    moduleName: "mySuperCoolModuleName",
  html = marigold.html(["*.pug"], { watch: ["*.md"] }),
  css = marigold.css(["*.styl"]),
  images = marigold.images(["*.png", "*.jpg"]),

  devServer = marigold.devServer(

marigold.taskify([js, html, css, images], { default: devServer });

Run the build process

For the most part, you'll just want to run:


This runs the default task, which runs the debug build configuration plus a local development server with live-reload and remote console. Other tasks include format (format the defined JavaScript files to match a default style), debug (run the build sans-dev-server), and release (run the build with minification options enabled).

An example output for Marigold itself with the default setup in place looks like:

sean@Moonpie:~/Projects/marigold$ gulp
[21:12:01] Using gulpfile ~/Projects/marigold/gulpfile.js
[21:12:01] Starting 'es2015:js:umd:debug'...
[21:12:01] Starting 'marigold-build:css:debug'...
[21:12:01] Starting 'marigold-build:html:debug'...
[21:12:02] Finished 'marigold-build:css:debug' after 1.77 s
[21:12:02] Starting 'watch:marigold-build:css:debug'...
[21:12:03] Finished 'watch:marigold-build:css:debug' after 26 ms
[21:12:03] Finished 'marigold-build:html:debug' after 2.02 s
[21:12:03] Starting 'watch:marigold-build:html:debug'...
[21:12:03] Finished 'watch:marigold-build:html:debug' after 21 ms
[21:12:03] Finished 'es2015:js:umd:debug' after 2.27 s
[21:12:03] Starting 'watch:es2015:js:umd:debug:only'...
[21:12:03] Finished 'watch:es2015:js:umd:debug:only' after 3.97 ms
[21:12:08] Starting 'default'...
[21:12:08] Mode is dev
[21:12:08] Serving from directory ~/Projects
[21:12:08] Listening on port 8080
[21:12:08] starting insecure server
[21:12:08] starting the WebSocket server
[21:12:08] starting:  explorer http://localhost:8080/marigold-build/
[21:12:08] Finished 'default' after 206 ms
GET /marigold-build/ 200 6.124 ms - 89299
GET /marigold-build/index.css 200 2.194 ms - 1598
GET /marigold-build/node_modules/ 304 2.780 ms - -
[21:12:08] new client connection. Total clients: 1
new socket!
LOG:>  Live reload enabled.

CMD:> |


Marigold provides a small API for performing specific, common tasks, rather than a generic API for performing any task. Use Gulp on your own for less common setups. There are two options for initializing Marigold:


The defaultSetup() function expects a specific, minimal project directory structure:

It defines tasks for:


setup(gulp, pkg)

Initializes and returns the Marigold namespace containing the Task functions below, as well as the following gulp tasks:


Return Value

The Marigold namespace.

Task functions


The marigold.js() task generator is by far the most complex, as Marigold assumes you intend to manage your project complexity in your JavaScript source code and not your HTML or CSS.

This task generator is responsible for taking ES2015, TypeScript, or React JSX code and translating it to ES5, and concatenating all modules into a single bundle. See the options parameter for how the behavior may be changed to add other features, e.g. source-maps.


Return Value

Returns a task name definition Object, having the following fields. You will need these fields to be able to combine configurations from different tasks into more friendly-named tasks by configuration. Marigold generates a lot of tasks and the names of those tasks must be unique as Gulp overwrites existing tasks if a new task of the same name is created.

marigold.html(files, [options])

Generates HTML files from Pug templates. There are a number of convenient goodies that will be available to your Pug templates.


Return Value

Returns a task name definition Object, having the following fields. You will need these fields to be able to specify task dependencies with other Gulp tasks. Marigold generates a lot of tasks and the names of those tasks must be unique as Gulp overwrites existing tasks if a new task of the same name is created.

marigold.css(files, [options])

Generates CSS files from Stylus templates. This is the least-developed part of Marigold, as my personal usage usually only involves making Canvas elements fill the page.


Return Value

Returns a task name definition Object, having the following fields. You will need these fields to be able to specify task dependencies with other Gulp tasks. Marigold generates a lot of tasks and the names of those tasks must be unique as Gulp overwrites existing tasks if a new task of the same name is created.

marigold.images(files, [options])

Compresses images and strips them of unnecessary metadata, to make them as small as possible. Only creates a release build task. Does not run during default or debug.


Return Value

Returns a task name definition Object, having the following fields. You will need these fields to be able to specify task dependencies with other Gulp tasks. Marigold generates a lot of tasks and the names of those tasks must be unique as Gulp overwrites existing tasks if a new task of the same name is created.

marigold.clean(files, [dependencies, options])

Deletes files. Use it to clean up intermediate files that you don't want to end up in your repository after a release build.


Return Value

Returns a single task name for the clean task that was generated.

marigold.devServer([watchForStop, watchForReload, options])

Run a local web server that can signal your running application to reload when changes have been made.

It's necessary to run a local web server for two reasons:

  1. So you may access the running version of your site from a mobile device.
  2. So you may have access to browser features that browser vendors have decided should not be available to HTML files loaded from "file://" URLs, such as:
    • Using images as WebGL textures,
    • Making AJAX requests,
    • Working with Service Workers,
    • Gaining access to the user's webcam and microphone with getUserMedia(),
    • Gaining access to the user's VR headset with getVRDisplays(),
    • etc.


marigold.taskify(taskConfigs, [postTasks])

Invert the grouping of tasksConfigs so that each type of task can be ran together as a block for a specific configuration.


Return Value


marigold.exec(cmd, [options, callback])

Execute system calls.


Return Value

If no callback parameter is provided, creates a function that accepts a callback. This function executes the system call and then executes the callback when the system call is complete. This is useful for making Gulp tasks that execute system calls.

If a callback parameter is provided, it's used to execute the previous function immediately.

APPENDIX: Convenient Pug goodies

When your Pug templates are processed, there will be a number of data properties available to your template that are not standard Pug features, but make using Pug a lot easier.

APPENDIX: Example gulpfile.js

// Setup a new collection of Gulp tasks:
var gulp = require("gulp");

// There is some information in the package.json that both the build system
// and our own script will find useful.
var pkg = require("./package.json"),

// This is Marigold. Provide it your Gulp task collection and package.json.
var marigold = require("marigold-build").setup(gulp, pkg);

// Build a JavaScript bundle. This supports translating ES2015 (aka ES6) code to
// ES5 (aka "the JavaScript all browsers actually have") using Babel, resolving
// import statements and bundling modules together using Rollup, and creating a
// watcher task to rerun the task if any files were changed.
var js = marigold.js({

    // Provide the entry point for the bundle. It's best to put the entry
    // point in its own directory so the change watcher doesn't end up
    // watching the node_modules directory, too.
    // NOTE: providing a JSX file will automatically process React code, and
    // providing a TS file will automatically process TypeScript code.
    entry: "src/index.js",

    // The `moduleName` property is only necessary if:
    //  A) the entry point exports a value, and
    //  B) you don't like the auto-generated name for the module (which will
    //     be the task name prefix, in UpperCamelCase, with any hyphens
    //     removed).
    moduleName: "mySuperCoolModuleName",

    // Other options include:
    // -- name: if you're running multiple build tasks of the same type,
    //           (js, html, css), you will need a name-prefix to different-
    //           iate them. The build system will postfix the value you provide
    //           to differentiate between the tasks *it* creates, so by default
    //           this value is just the name of your project in package.json.
    // -- watch: additional files to watch for restarting the build. By
    //           default, the system watches all of the files in the parent
    //           directory of the entry point file.
    // -- advertise: whether or not to include a `` printout
    //           with information from the package.json advertising the
    //           package you are building. Useful for giving hints to people
    //           snooping around in the browser's JavaScript console. Defaults
    //           to false.
    // -- banner: Add whatever text you want to the top of the bundle file.
    // -- format: The module format to generate. Options are:
    //     (default) "umd": Universal Module Definition.
    //     "es": for ES2015 modules. The output file's extension will be
    //           ".modules.js", unless you explicitly define a fileName.
    //     "iife": Immediately Invoked Function Expression. The output file's
    //           extension will be ".iife.js", unless you explicitly define a
    //           fileName.
    //     "amd": Asynchronous Module Definition. The output file's extension
    //           will be ".amd.js", unless you explicitly define a fileName.
    //     "cjs": CommonJS. The output file's extension will be ".cjs.js",
    //           unless you explicitly define a fileName.

// Generate HTML files from Pug templates.
var html = marigold.html(

    // Options:

      // Additional files to watch for changes to kick-off rerunning the task.
      watch: ["*.md"]

// Generate CSS files from Stylus templates.
var css = marigold.css(["*.styl"]);

// Crunch images down to their most useful size.
var images = marigold.images(["*.png", "*.jpg"]);

// Create a development server
var devServer = marigold.devServer(

  // Files to watch to send a "STOP" command to all loaded apps. Useful in
  // scenarios like WebGL where the app may be taking a significant amount of
  // processing power that will slow down the build process. In other words, a
  // polite way of asking the app to stop what it is doing so Marigold can do
  // its work.

  // Files to watch to send a "RELOAD" command to all loaded apps.

// Take each of the task groups (js, html, css, images), and slice them into task groups
// by configuration name (format, default, debug, release). Optionally, add an
// additional task after the group runs, by the same set of names.
marigold.taskify([js, html, css, images], { default: devServer });

APPENDIX: Dependencies

Marigold depends on the following projects:


Thank you for your interest in contributing to Marigold! We'd love for you to get involved, so please read the information below for creating an issue, creating a pull request, and commit message format.

Creating an Issue

If you have a question about Marigold, please email me, Sean T. McBeth.

If you think you have found a bug, or have a new feature idea, please start by making sure it hasn't already been reported. You can search through existing issues to see if there is a similar one reported (include closed issues as it may have been closed with a solution). When creating an issue, please thoroughly explain the problem.

Creating a Pull Request

If you are contributing a bug-fix or a very minor addition, feel free to do a pull request on the master branch.

If it is something else, create a new (or existing) feature branch (eg: feature/my_feature) and issue a pull request on that.

Commit Message Format

We ask that any git commit messages made follow the formats below. This helps provide more readable messages that are easier to follow when looking through the project history.

type: subject

For type, please include one of the following:

For subject, brevity is the soul of wit. Please try keep your commit description to a minimum.


LICENSE Copyright (c) 2017 Sean T. McBeth All rights reserved.


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Additional Terms.

"Additional permissions" are terms that supplement the terms of this License by making exceptions from one or more of its conditions. Additional permissions that are applicable to the entire Program shall be treated as though they were included in this License, to the extent that they are valid under applicable law. If additional permissions apply only to part of the Program, that part may be used separately under those permissions, but the entire Program remains governed by this License without regard to the additional permissions.

When you convey a copy of a covered work, you may at your option remove any additional permissions from that copy, or from any part of it. (Additional permissions may be written to require their own removal in certain cases when you modify the work.) You may place additional permissions on material, added by you to a covered work, for which you have or can give appropriate copyright permission.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this License, for material you add to a covered work, you may (if authorized by the copyright holders of that material) supplement the terms of this License with terms:

  1. Disclaiming warranty or limiting liability differently from the terms of sections 15 and 16 of this License; or
  2. Requiring preservation of specified reasonable legal notices or author attributions in that material or in the Appropriate Legal Notices displayed by works containing it; or
  3. Prohibiting misrepresentation of the origin of that material, or requiring that modified versions of such material be marked in reasonable ways as different from the original version; or
  4. Limiting the use for publicity purposes of names of licensors or authors of the material; or
  5. Declining to grant rights under trademark law for use of some trade names, trademarks, or service marks; or
  6. Requiring indemnification of licensors and authors of that material by anyone who conveys the material (or modified versions of it) with contractual assumptions of liability to the recipient, for any liability that these contractual assumptions directly impose on those licensors and authors.

All other non-permissive additional terms are considered "further restrictions" within the meaning of section 10. If the Program as you received it, or any part of it, contains a notice stating that it is governed by this License along with a term that is a further restriction, you may remove that term. If a license document contains a further restriction but permits relicensing or conveying under this License, you may add to a covered work material governed by the terms of that license document, provided that the further restriction does not survive such relicensing or conveying.

If you add terms to a covered work in accord with this section, you must place, in the relevant source files, a statement of the additional terms that apply to those files, or a notice indicating where to find the applicable terms.

Additional terms, permissive or non-permissive, may be stated in the form of a separately written license, or stated as exceptions; the above requirements apply either way.


You may not propagate or modify a covered work except as expressly provided under this License. Any attempt otherwise to propagate or modify it is void, and will automatically terminate your rights under this License (including any patent licenses granted under the third paragraph of section 11).

However, if you cease all violation of this License, then your license from a particular copyright holder is reinstated (a) provisionally, unless and until the copyright holder explicitly and finally terminates your license, and (b) permanently, if the copyright holder fails to notify you of the violation by some reasonable means prior to 60 days after the cessation.

Moreover, your license from a particular copyright holder is reinstated permanently if the copyright holder notifies you of the violation by some reasonable means, this is the first time you have received notice of violation of this License (for any work) from that copyright holder, and you cure the violation prior to 30 days after your receipt of the notice.

Termination of your rights under this section does not terminate the licenses of parties who have received copies or rights from you under this License. If your rights have been terminated and not permanently reinstated, you do not qualify to receive new licenses for the same material under section 10.

Acceptance Not Required for Having Copies.

You are not required to accept this License in order to receive or run a copy of the Program. Ancillary propagation of a covered work occurring solely as a consequence of using peer-to-peer transmission to receive a copy likewise does not require acceptance. However, nothing other than this License grants you permission to propagate or modify any covered work. These actions infringe copyright if you do not accept this License. Therefore, by modifying or propagating a covered work, you indicate your acceptance of this License to do so.

Automatic Licensing of Downstream Recipients.

Each time you convey a covered work, the recipient automatically receives a license from the original licensors, to run, modify and propagate that work, subject to this License. You are not responsible for enforcing compliance by third parties with this License.

An "entity transaction" is a transaction transferring control of an organization, or substantially all assets of one, or subdividing an organization, or merging organizations. If propagation of a covered work results from an entity transaction, each party to that transaction who receives a copy of the work also receives whatever licenses to the work the party's predecessor in interest had or could give under the previous paragraph, plus a right to possession of the Corresponding Source of the work from the predecessor in interest, if the predecessor has it or can get it with reasonable efforts.

You may not impose any further restrictions on the exercise of the rights granted or affirmed under this License. For example, you may not impose a license fee, royalty, or other charge for exercise of rights granted under this License, and you may not initiate litigation (including a cross-claim or counterclaim in a lawsuit) alleging that any patent claim is infringed by making, using, selling, offering for sale, or importing the Program or any portion of it.


A "contributor" is a copyright holder who authorizes use under this License of the Program or a work on which the Program is based. The work thus licensed is called the contributor's "contributor version".

A contributor's "essential patent claims" are all patent claims owned or controlled by the contributor, whether already acquired or hereafter acquired, that would be infringed by some manner, permitted by this License, of making, using, or selling its contributor version, but do not include claims that would be infringed only as a consequence of further modification of the contributor version. For purposes of this definition, "control" includes the right to grant patent sublicenses in a manner consistent with the requirements of this License.

Each contributor grants you a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free patent license under the contributor's essential patent claims, to make, use, sell, offer for sale, import and otherwise run, modify and propagate the contents of its contributor version.

In the following three paragraphs, a "patent license" is any express agreement or commitment, however denominated, not to enforce a patent (such as an express permission to practice a patent or covenant not to sue for patent infringement). To "grant" such a patent license to a party means to make such an agreement or commitment not to enforce a patent against the party.

If you convey a covered work, knowingly relying on a patent license, and the Corresponding Source of the work is not available for anyone to copy, free of charge and under the terms of this License, through a publicly available network server or other readily accessible means, then you must either (1) cause the Corresponding Source to be so available, or (2) arrange to deprive yourself of the benefit of the patent license for this particular work, or (3) arrange, in a manner consistent with the requirements of this License, to extend the patent license to downstream recipients. "Knowingly relying" means you have actual knowledge that, but for the patent license, your conveying the covered work in a country, or your recipient's use of the covered work in a country, would infringe one or more identifiable patents in that country that you have reason to believe are valid.

If, pursuant to or in connection with a single transaction or arrangement, you convey, or propagate by procuring conveyance of, a covered work, and grant a patent license to some of the parties receiving the covered work authorizing them to use, propagate, modify or convey a specific copy of the covered work, then the patent license you grant is automatically extended to all recipients of the covered work and works based on it.

A patent license is "discriminatory" if it does not include within the scope of its coverage, prohibits the exercise of, or is conditioned on the non-exercise of one or more of the rights that are specifically granted under this License. You may not convey a covered work if you are a party to an arrangement with a third party that is in the business of distributing software, under which you make payment to the third party based on the extent of your activity of conveying the work, and under which the third party grants, to any of the parties who would receive the covered work from you, a discriminatory patent license (a) in connection with copies of the covered work conveyed by you (or copies made from those copies), or (b) primarily for and in connection with specific products or compilations that contain the covered work, unless you entered into that arrangement, or that patent license was granted, prior to 28 March 2007.

Nothing in this License shall be construed as excluding or limiting any implied license or other defenses to infringement that may otherwise be available to you under applicable patent law.

No Surrender of Others' Freedom.

If conditions are imposed on you (whether by court order, agreement or otherwise) that contradict the conditions of this License, they do not excuse you from the conditions of this License. If you cannot convey a covered work so as to satisfy simultaneously your obligations under this License and any other pertinent obligations, then as a consequence you may not convey it at all. For example, if you agree to terms that obligate you to collect a royalty for further conveying from those to whom you convey the Program, the only way you could satisfy both those terms and this License would be to refrain entirely from conveying the Program.

Use with the GNU Affero General Public License.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this License, you have permission to link or combine any covered work with a work licensed under version 3 of the GNU Affero General Public License into a single combined work, and to convey the resulting work. The terms of this License will continue to apply to the part which is the covered work, but the special requirements of the GNU Affero General Public License, section 13, concerning interaction through a network will apply to the combination as such.

Revised Versions of this License.

The Free Software Foundation may publish revised and/or new versions of the GNU General Public License from time to time. Such new versions will be similar in spirit to the present version, but may differ in detail to address new problems or concerns.

Each version is given a distinguishing version number. If the Program specifies that a certain numbered version of the GNU General Public License "or any later version" applies to it, you have the option of following the terms and conditions either of that numbered version or of any later version published by the Free Software Foundation. If the Program does not specify a version number of the GNU General Public License, you may choose any version ever published by the Free Software Foundation.

If the Program specifies that a proxy can decide which future versions of the GNU General Public License can be used, that proxy's public statement of acceptance of a version permanently authorizes you to choose that version for the Program.

Later license versions may give you additional or different permissions. However, no additional obligations are imposed on any author or copyright holder as a result of your choosing to follow a later version.

Disclaimer of Warranty.


Limitation of Liability.


Interpretation of Sections 15 and 16.

If the disclaimer of warranty and limitation of liability provided above cannot be given local legal effect according to their terms, reviewing courts shall apply local law that most closely approximates an absolute waiver of all civil liability in connection with the Program, unless a warranty or assumption of liability accompanies a copy of the Program in return for a fee.

How to Apply These Terms to Your New Programs

If you develop a new program, and you want it to be of the greatest possible use to the public, the best way to achieve this is to make it free software which everyone can redistribute and change under these terms.

To do so, attach the following notices to the program. It is safest to attach them to the start of each source file to most effectively state the exclusion of warranty; and each file should have at least the "copyright" line and a pointer to where the full notice is found.

{a line to give the program's name and a brief idea of what it does}
Copyright (C) {year}  {name of author}

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify
it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by
the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or
(at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this program.  If not, see <>.

Also add information on how to contact you by electronic and paper mail.

If the program does terminal interaction, make it output a short notice like this when it starts in an interactive mode:

{project}  Copyright (C) {year}  {fullname}
This program comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY; for details
type `show w`. This is free software, and you are welcome to
redistribute it under certain conditions; type `show c` for details.

The hypothetical commands show w and show c should show the appropriate parts of the General Public License. Of course, your program's commands might be different; for a GUI interface, you would use an "about box".

You should also get your employer (if you work as a programmer) or school, if any, to sign a "copyright disclaimer" for the program, if necessary. For more information on this, and how to apply and follow the GNU GPL, see

The GNU General Public License does not permit incorporating your program into proprietary programs. If your program is a subroutine library, you may consider it more useful to permit linking proprietary applications with the library. If this is what you want to do, use the GNU Lesser General Public License instead of this License. But first, please read