Tag clouds in Jekyll - no plugins required

Jekyll has built-in support for tagging of pages and posts, but doesn’t provide any functionality to create tag clouds. Because this is so common, there is a nice plugin for it: jekyll-tagging.

When upgrading to Jekyll 3.3.1 I found that the plugin stopped working. So I decided to cook my own simple solution to get it to work. In this post I’ll shortly explain how I solved it.

Follow The Bits - Eye Tracking hardware for VR

This post is about the first serious Virtual Reality projects I’ve had the joy to participate in. I was contacted by Atoms2Bits because they needed custom hardware made for the Virtual Supermarket (in which I’m now also participating as an entrepreneur).

When we started this project in 2015 there was no off-the-shelf eye tracking hardware available, so we had to develop this ourselves. This post is a short writeup about the collaboration, hardware we developed, the process and my part in the work.

Snippet: sorting on custom date in Jekyll

On my blog I want to tag certain posts as “work” so that I can create a separate page that serves as a portfolio of my work. Because the date of the post isn’t always the date of the work I’ve done, some customisations were needed that were not directly available on the web or the Jekyll documentation.

I’ve added a category and custom date to the post’s front matter:

category: work
work_date: 2015-01-01 # format = YYYY-MM-DD

This gives us the necessary information to create a list of posts and a date to order them by. To solve the sorting issue, I used the following code:

{% assign sorted_posts = (site.categories.work | sort: 'work_date') %}
{% for post in sorted_posts reversed %}
<!-- your post here --> 
{% endfor %}

May it serve you well.

Snippet: Youtube videos in Jekyll - no plugins required

This solution utilises the ability to pass parameters to included files. You can pass the video ID to a generic YouTube embed code used on all pages.

Create file _includes/youtube.html containing the following code:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/{{ include.id }}?rel=0&amp;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Note: this uses the “privacy enhanced mode” and only the YouTube video ID has been parametrised.

To embed a Youtube video, use this in your posts:

{% include youtube.html id="_G790yZA5CA" %}

TIQ - Automated Time Tracking

This post is about a company I’ve been involved with from the start. I’ve seen it grow from an idea to a startup and participated in the Microsoft Ventures and Rockstart accelerator programmes.

TIQ is devoted to making time tracking less of a pain. It proactively captures your work activities and uses them to automatically generate an overview of the time you spent on specific clients, projects or tasks. We have created a short video to illustrate how it works:

In this post I will shortly explain what TIQ is, how it works and how I got involved in this company.

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