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Which tools and technologies build the Stack Exchange Network?

When I search for

javascript CSS management stackoverflow

I get lot of interesting stuff but I'm interested in techniques used by Stack Overflow. I know they are using .net version of less but what with javascripts and copying result of merge and minify to CDN.


  1. I'm intersted in tools used to merge and minify js and css (in runtime, after build)
  2. Including js and css in user controls
  3. Managing versions of jquery
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marked as duplicate by Shadow Wizard, Time Traveling Bobby, ChrisF, Yi Jiang, Kevin Vermeer Nov 22 '11 at 13:18

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

It's all explained with great detail in the linked post. – Shadow Wizard Nov 22 '11 at 8:25
I feel stupid but can't see anything about css and jquery management. – user235681 Nov 22 '11 at 8:34

2 Answers 2

up vote 0 down vote accepted

A lot of these questions can be answered on balpha's blog. Specifically your question at hand:

A while ago, we moved much of the JavaScript functionality on the Stack Exchange sites over to using lazy loading. Only a small part of the required JavaScript is now inserted into the page via <script> tags in the HTML file; all the rest is added via JavaScript itself. read more...

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It's all in here:
Which tools and technologies are used to build the Stack Exchange Network?

The relevant part of you is under "Dev Tools" section:

- Browser Framework jQuery 1.5.2

You can even see in the revisions page that they switched from jQuery 1.4.4 to 1.5.2 in August 26 (see revision 33)

As for CSS no tools are used as far as I can see - one plain CSS file is handling it all, you can see it in the HTML source code if you like.

If you mean to ask "how they write the code?" then it's also in there:

- IDE Visual Studio 2010 Team Suite

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As for minify it's a good question, edit your question and make it more clear that's what you're asking. I guess they're using one of the free tools available, but only developer can say for sure. Not sure what you mean by "strategy for CSS".. ? – Shadow Wizard Nov 22 '11 at 9:51
"what strategy have for js and css in user controls" - I would like to know if they have some sicript manager or put all js and css in separate folder. – user235681 Nov 22 '11 at 10:13
@user235681: Regarding the versioning for CSS/JS on SE sites, you can see balpha♦'s post which shows that it's generated using sha1sum. – Nightfirecat Nov 22 '11 at 10:17
@Nightfirecat I understand checksum part, thanks for the link but when and how result js is generated? – user235681 Nov 22 '11 at 10:23
@user235681: balpha's blog is a go-to resource for this topic. – user7116 Nov 22 '11 at 12:00
@six that's a great find, wasn't even aware of his blog! Think it deserves answer of its own, my upvote is promised. :-) – Shadow Wizard Nov 22 '11 at 12:03
@six I will upvote separate answer too – user235681 Nov 22 '11 at 12:07

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