ANN: js2json and json2js (for CouchApps)

Here’s a copy of the email I sent to the CouchDB users mailing list:

I made a couple of npm (node.js) modules for editing CouchDB design documents that involves fewer files than python CouchApp, but like python CouchApp supports two-way sync. The function source is left intact when converting between JavaScript source and JSON. The JavaScript source version just shows it in an embedded function expression, which makes it syntax highlightable.

http://benatkin.com/2012/09/04/js2json-and-json2js/
https://github.com/benatkin/js2json
https://github.com/benatkin/json2js

Here’s a quick example. If I stick this in books.js:

module.exports = {
  "views": {
    "author": {
      "map": function(doc) {
        if (doc.type == 'book')
          emit(doc.author, null);
      }
    },
    "title": {
      "map": function(doc) {
        if (doc.type == 'book')
          emit(doc.title, null);
      }
    }
  }
}

…and run this (after npm install json2js js2json):

var js2json = require('js2json');
var json2js = require('json2js');
var fs = require('fs');

var jsSource = fs.readFileSync('books.js', 'utf8');
var jsonValue = js2json.convert(jsSource);
fs.writeFileSync('books.json', JSON.stringify(jsonValue, null, 2) + "\n");
var jsSourceFromJson = json2js.convert(jsonValue);
fs.writeFileSync('books-from-json.js', jsSourceFromJson + "\n");

…I get the following in books.json:

{
  "views": {
    "author": {
      "map": "function(doc) {\n  if (doc.type == 'book')\n
emit(doc.author, null);\n}"
    },
    "title": {
      "map": "function(doc) {\n  if (doc.type == 'book')\n
emit(doc.title, null);\n}"
    }
  }
}

…and books-from-json.js is exactly the same as books.js.

I explain it more in my blog post (linked at the top of this message). I need to add a cli tool that syncs, a way to handle attachments, and a way to handle embedded multiline strings for it to be a full-featured design doc editor. I have much bigger plans for this, though: I want to break up CouchApps into a bunch of smaller documents! The source and tests for these two modules is programmed in the same style. I think storing functions in JSON makes CouchDB just a little bit like Smalltalk, with a much more familiar language.

Thanks for reading. Feedback welcome and appreciated.