I have been thinking about jumping into shopify theme dev for a while. I tried Slate about 6 months ago and encountered too many problems to continue so I thought I'd wait for a stable version to come out. As it's still in beta, I was wondering about peoples opinion on if Slate is stable enough to be used for development? Is there an estimate when a stable version 1 will be released?
If you don't use Slate, what do you use for development and is there a good alternative to Slate where it's still possible to take advantage of the starter themes?
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I haven't had any major issues with Slate but I also use it a little differently so I cannot give you a complete picture. Here's my setup
Much of the flow still has quite some room for improvement. The canary deployment is meh as is because it wouldn't scale to multiple canaries. At least a dozen should be supportable on any given store before hitting theme limits. Same goes for tagged release deploy - will want a blue-green setup so that the previously published theme version is always kept around for quick rollbacks.
The main take away though is that Slate works fine, Motifmate local emulation is a 10-fold productivity improvement and no developer ever makes any change to assets via Slate or heavens forbid via Admin UI - only the CI/CD pipeline can do that (which is good for larger teams... no overwrites, no worries with shared collaborator accounts, NDAs, who changed what and when and did they also peek in to stuff they shouldn't be looking at? etc)
Hope this helps or at least gives you some ideas of what can be done.