Manos de Mano

September 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

I ran across this the other day, and thought it was very cool. I’ve been deep in the bowels of Sharepoint, Active Directory, and WCF for the last couple of weeks, so when I happened across a simple, straightforward, to-the-point framework for building web applications in .NET, I thought that sounded just great.

What is Manos de Mano?

Manos is an easy to use, easy to test, high performance web application framework that stays out of your way and makes your life ridiculously simple.

Check out some of the features:

  • A scalable non-blocking HTTP server. Manos includes its own high performance web server based on friendfeed’s tornado web server ( Having an integrated server simplifies deployment and allows the underlying server to be customized to meet the needs of the higher level framework.
  • An HTTP “pipes” system, that allows you to hook into and process all http requests and responses before/after they get to the main routing framework.
  • Simple routing. There are a number of easy ways you can route requests to methods in Manos. Using properties to route to other modules, convention based method signatures to implicitly add methods, attributes on methods to explicitly route to them or by using the HTTP methods to add a delegate for a route. All these routes can be defined with string matching, regular expressions or a simple named group matching syntax that looks like this: “/Articles/{title}/{page}/”.
  • Named parameter conversion on methods. If you create a method Foo (IManosContext ctx, string bar, int idx). Manos will find those parameters in the request data and automatically type convert them for you.
  • HTML5 Boilerplate. When you create a new Manos project you get a layout based on the HTML5 boilerplate project ( This gives you a rock solid place to start for your front end development.
  • A wicked fast, html-centric template engine. The Manos template engine is designed to be designer and developer friendly. You can easily edit the template files without the help of an IDE and if a designer sends you html files, you can easily convert them into templates. To maximize performance the templates are compiled, not interpretted but they can still be generated at runtime.
  • A simple command line tool for creating, building and hosting your apps. No IDE needed. Creating a new project is as simple as typing manos -init.
  • Reusability: The success of todays popular web application frameworks is not just in their API or performance, its in the wealth of community developed libraries that can be easily plugged into your application. To facilate this, Manos is designed with shareable modules in mind. The framework is designed to encourage modular systems design and code reuse.

I’m going to have to find some time to play with the framework – it looks excellent. Many thanks to Jackson Harper for putting the time into this.


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