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File Based Dependency Injection

In Ember you have the concept of "name a file the right thing and it will be picked up by the system". This is also true for Cardstack for both the Ember-specific parts and the more back end parts of the system.

For the back end side of this equation we need to think of Cardstack plugins. A Cardstack plugin is just an npm package that has the keyword cardstack-plugin in its package.json. Cardstack plugins are automatically picked up in a very similar way to how Ember addons are automatically discovered in an Ember app.

Cardstack plugins can have an extra config in the package.json file that defines the folder to look for Cardstack Dependency Injection Types/Files. Eg:

  "cardstack-plugin": {
    "api-version": 1,
    "src": "cardstack"

If you don't have this config in the package.json then the Dependency Injection Types/Files will be in the top level of the npm package. A good example of this difference is the @cardstack/mobiledoc package (located in cardstack/cardstack/packages/mobiledoc) and the @cardstack/jsonapi package (located in cardstack/cardstack/packages/jsonapi).

You will see that @cardstack/mobiledoc is an Ember-Addon, and because of this it is useful to have the Cardstack specific plugins in a subdirectory, where as @cardstack/jsonapi only provides a single Cardstack Dependency Injection Type/File middleware.js so it doesn't make sense to put it in a subdirectory.