The Asset Pipeline

The asset pipeline provides a framework to concatenate and minify or compress JavaScript and CSS assets. It also adds the ability to write these assets in other languages such as CoffeeScript, Sass and ERB.

The first feature of the pipeline is to concatenate assets. This is important in a production environment, because it can reduce the number of requests that a browser makes to render a web page. Web browsers are limited in the number of requests that they can make in parallel, so fewer requests can mean faster loading for your application.

The second feature of the asset pipeline is asset minification or compression. For CSS files, this is done by removing whitespace and comments. For JavaScript, more complex processes can be applied. You can choose from a set of built in options or specify your own.

The third feature of the asset pipeline is that it allows coding assets via a higher-level language, with precompilation down to the actual assets. Supported languages include Sass for CSS, CoffeeScript for JavaScript, and ERB for both by default.

read more( and how it works on rails): http://guides.rubyonrails.org/asset_pipeline.html

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