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Preview Text Generator Plugin

About 3 minutes to read

Serum.Plugins.PreviewGenerator is a Serum plugin that generates preview texts of pages and blog posts. This plugin is included in the serum package, so you don’t need to add an extra dependency to use this plugin.

Using the Plugin

First, add this plugin to your serum.exs:

  plugins: [
    # Use this plugin with default options.

    # Or, use this plugin with custom options.
    {Serum.Plugins.PreviewGenerator, args: options}

By default, this plugin takes the text of the first paragraph (<p> tag) to generate the preview text for each page or blog post. This behavior can be customized; see the Configuration section below for a list of available options.

Generated preview texts will be saved in :extras map of each page or post, with "preview" key. The name of key can also be customized.

<%= for post <- @all_posts do %>
  <div class="post-list-item">
    <!-- ... -->
    <p class="preview"><%= post.extras["preview"]</p>
<% end %>

If a page or a blog post already has extras["preview"] (or other key specified by the :preview_key option), its value will be used instead.

title: Sample Blog Post
date: 2020-07-17
tags: sample
preview: This string will be used instead as a preview text of this post.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, ...


  • :length

    A keyword list which determines the maximum length of each preview text. Each item of this keyword list is called a “length spec,” and a length spec should look like one of the followings:

    • {:chars, max_chars} - Limits the maximum length of preview texts to max_chars characters.

    • {:words, max_words} - Limits the maximum length of preview texts to max_words words. Each word is a group of characters splitted by one or more whitespace characters.

    • {:paragraphs, max_paragraphs} - Limits the maximum length of preview texts to max_paragraphs paragraphs. This option assumes that contents of each page or blog post is well-organized using <p> tags. Otherwise this plugin may produce undesired results.

    This keyword list can have more than one length specs. In that case, this plugin will “sample” multiple preview texts for each page or blog post, and it will pick the shortest one as a final preview text.

    Defaults to [paragraphs: 1].

  • :preview_key

    A string which will be used as an alternative key for storing generated preview texts. For example, if you set :preview_key to "summary", you will be able to access the preview text in your templates like this:

    <% %Serum.Post{} = post %>
    <p><%= post.extras["summary"] %></p>

    Defaults to "preview". If any value is given, any leading or trailing whitespaces will be trimmed.

Configuration Example

# In your serum.exs:
  plugins: [
     args: [
       length: [paragraphs: 1, chars: 250],
       preview_key: "preview_text"