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Importing PNGs to JS is about dependency-wrangling, not task-running.

That is, the point of using webpack isn't that it's the best way to optimize a bunch of PNGs. The point of webpack is that it can parse your dependency tree and figure out which PNGs are depended on by a given entry point. If you also want your PNGs optimized, you can do that with a webpack plugin or a separate tool, as you like - that's orthogonal to the matter of why it's useful to import PNGs into JS.

Yeah, sorry but I don't buy that. webpack outputs JavaScript bundles, not a dependency graph. Importing PNGs into JavaScript is only useful if you use a JavaScript AST to then do something with those imports.

I'm not selling it, and I don't follow what you're disagreeing with. Webpack can output JS bundles, but it understands dependencies between non-JS assets as well, and will process any file in the dependency graph any way you like.

As such the point of requiring a PNG into JS (or CSS, or a Vue/React component, etc) is to tell webpack there's a dependency on it. Then that image will get pulled in to the build process for entry points that need it, and not otherwise.

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