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Features and Properties

  1. Properties
  2. Features
  3. Boolean Prompt or Checkbox

Before we show you conditional questions and choice, we have to understand how “makes” makes use of the answers from questions.

“makes” divides the answers into two groups.

  1. the answers from text prompts were grouped into a hash object called properties.
  2. the answers from select/multi-select prompts are grouped into an array called features.
  3. properties and features were built progressively when end user went through the questions, so we can use features to conditionally control the appearance of next question and choice of select prompt.

Take makesjs/demo2 questions.js for example, “makes” will form properties and features like this:

var properties = {
  name: 'my-app',
  description: '',
  author: 'CP'

var features = [ 'nodejs', 'gitignore', 'license', 'babel' ];


The properties from text prompts are only useful for @echo and @eval in preprocess file content.

/* @echo name */
var desc = /* @eval JSON.stringify(description) */;

Be careful, @echo does not automatically escape the string in any situation, we can use @eval to help escaping. We will explain more in preprocess file content.


The features array from answers of select/multi-select prompts have much wider usage in “makes”, it serves as the basis of any conditional logic. You can conditionally show questions, choices, files, part of file contents based on end user’s selected features.

Boolean Prompt or Checkbox

Note “makes” doesn’t provide any boolean/checkbox prompt. To do a “yes/no” question, just use a select prompt.

  message: 'Do you want to use PostCSS?',
  choices: [
    {title: 'No'},
    {value: 'postcss', title: 'Yes'}

Please don’t use string like "yes", "no", "true", "false" in choice values. Because “makes” select prompt’s answer is not labelled, "yes" and "no" are not readable in features array.

  1. use missing value for ‘No’ branch. When end user selected ‘No’, it adds nothing to features array.
  2. use readable string like 'postcss' in ‘Yes’ branch.