2023 Award Winner

Slater early-release: An open letter to the community

Welcome to Slater

This is a note for those who have joined our Slater early-release Slack channel. First, off thank you, it's great to see so many friends from Twitter. If we haven't met yet, I look forward to learning what you're building.

I know there's a lot to unpack from my tweet over the weekend. I'll get into the direction of EA in another post, but the gist is that we are pivoting to a product focus. Yes, we have been working towards this over the last ten years and consistently working on it for the last three years. Currently, we have four products in various stages, and Slater is the first one we are releasing into the world.

So, what is Slater, in simple terms?

Slater is a coding environment specifically designed for Webflow. Our mission: Create a bridge for people from different backgrounds, whether they are a Webflow developer or a traditional developer. We believe that you can do more with Webflow with just a little bit of code.

Who is this for?

Our roadmap will focus on a spectrum of technology capacities, from established JS developers to aspiring ones to beginners.

Advanced Developers

For established JavaScript developers, we understand the challenges of developing in Webflow. That's why we're solving for workflow and management with Slater. Today, our product includes:

  • Project mapping: A feature that allows you to map out your projects and visualize your codebase.
  • Fully-featured coding environment: We offer a fully-featured coding environment to help you manage and work on your projects.
  • Syntax highlight: Slater includes syntax highlighting for optimal coding readability.
  • Managed publishing: Our feature lets you manage publishing, so you can have one embed that knows the difference between what is dev and prod, with the ability to commit to GitHub and control who can view and edit your code.

Intermediate Developers

If you're an aspiring JavaScript developer (and aren't we all), we're currently in active development on a range of features, including:

  • AI-paired development environment: We currently have an environment where you can ask Slater to write JavaScript for you.
  • Training model for Webflow: We're currently working on training the model around Webflow's needs to make Slater even more effective.

Those Just Getting Started
If you're a beginner JavaScript developer, we have a range of offerings to help you develop your skills, including:

  • JavaScript for free: You can ask questions and receive answers during our weekly office hours on our Slack channel.
  • JavaScript for hire: We have a list of people who can consult on your projects.
  • Just enough JavaScript training: Jared, our product director, is developing a course on how to learn just enough JavaScript, which we've been using internally and will soon make available.
  • Script library of just enough JavaScript: We're currently working on a library of common assets that can be easily configured and added to your project.

When can you expect access?

We are starting with building a community. We will do that in multiple ways, from our Slack channel to updates on EA Twitter to a video series to weekly email newsletters.

We're sending out surveys to better understand what everyone is working on, and we'll be reporting back. One of the big things we see is a lot of people are very interested in learning JS — so awesome!

Our first group of users will be the established JavaScript devs. Slater is a technical product, and we want to start where we have solved the bulk of these needs.

What should you expect in terms of communication?

First, we don't have all the answers, and we will be learning with this community. We will share updates regularly, and some things we publish won't be totally polished. We've made the choice that we'd rather learn from something that's good enough than sit on something that might be great or total garbage.

More soon. Thank you.

– Mason

How can we help?

Reach out to talk projects, products, brand, content, or no-code philosophy.
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