Building templates for Quickly and new webber-app template

Note: This is an old post in a blog with a lot of posts. The world has changed, technologies have changed, and I've changed. It's likely this is out of date and not representative. Let me know if you think this is something that needs updating.

Quickly is an application that makes it easier to start new software development projects by filling in a lot of the skeletal structure from a set of templates. I've read about it a bunch on Jono's blog in the context of his push for "opportunistic developers".

Chris Webber and I have been throwing together web applications most of which have the same basic structure: WebOb, Jinja2, simplejson, and routes with some glue and stuff in between.

I spent some time building a Quickly template for this structure. The results of this are quickly-webber-app.

It was hard. There's no docmentation that I could find on creating templates for Quickly, so I had to look through the ubuntu-project template and read through the Quickly code. Even then, I bumped into a few gotchas.

  • the command scripts are run as scripts and not imported as Python modules

  • command scripts must be executable, otherwise Quickly silently skips them when building its commands list

  • probably better to develop the template in your ~/quickly-templates/ directory rather than as a project and schlepping things in and out like I did

I was using the Quickly that comes with Ubuntu Karmic which is 0.2.6. Ubuntu Lucid has a newer version, but I didn't want to fiddle with trying to get it to install on Karmic given that it's got dependencies that aren't readily available in Karmic.

After talking with Chris, he suggested I redo it with Paste templates. There's a good explanation at It'd be interesting to see if I could build a set of templates that works with both Quickly and Paste.

Anyhow, the project is there if it's interesting to anyone. Email me or comment below if you have questions, comments, concerns, whatever.


5/2/2010 - Didier (Quickly dev) says there is documentation for creating templates at

Want to comment? Send an email to willkg at bluesock dot org. Include the url for the blog entry in your comment so I have some context as to what you're talking about.