I don't use LESS on any projects, but I have used it to create prototypes just to familiarize myself with the LESS project while researching CSS preprocessors.
LESS offers two options for integration — client side or server side.
The client side option means the pre-processing of your
.less files executes in the browser, which makes for an interesting feature if you simply want to play around with LESS and familiarize yourself with the concept of CSS pre-processors without having to install additional libraries.
The second option, server side, requires Node to be installed so it can pre-process and compile your
.less files into CSS.
For a production environment, leaving the processing to the user's browser (i.e. client side) is not ideal. For a development environment, though, you may find that feature inviting.
Personally, Node.js isn't in my current development stack, so server side pre-processing of my
.less files isn't an option. Therefore, I leveraged my favorite feature of LESS, client side processing, which is actually pretty awesome for one main reason — you don't have to interrupt your current development workflow with any pre-deploy processing steps.
This addition of a pre-processing step in your workflow isn't a huge deal to many but for those not looking to add additional requirements to their stack (i.e. Node.js for LESS or Ruby if you're using SASS) then this is any easy way to start playing around with the concepts behind LESS and SASS.
A Closer Look
Again, the client side implementation will process your your
.less files when the page renders. Currently, the client side processing supports IE 6+, Webkit, and Firefox browsers. To see what I'm talking about visit the LESS project site lesscss.org and make sure to view source.
You'll notice a reference to
main.less using a link tag with a
rel attribute with the value 'stylesheet/less'. This is then processed by
less.js on the client side generating valid CSS. That's it. That's the implementation. Pretty darn cool, no?
So if you're not comfortable with any of the server side pre-processing requirements, try using LESS client-side to familiarize yourself with the features of these CSS pre-processors (mixing, variables, functions, etc).