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Generating Eleventy Category Pages Inside Eleventy Build

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Posted: June 5, 2023 | Categories: Eleventy

Last week I published an article, Eleventy Paginated Category Pages, that described a command-line utility I created that runs as a preprocessor to the Eleventy build process and generates paginated category pages for every category in use in an Eleventy site.

I wrote it as command-line tool because I didn't know how to build something like that and inject it into the Eleventy build process. I expected that I should be able to publish it as a Node module and call it from the build process, but I didn't want it to be clunky.

A few minutes after I published the article, I finished reading Eleventy by Example and found the answer I needed there. I wasn't aware of the Eleventy build events and the book showed me everything I needed to know to execute the module before Eleventy starts its build process like this:

  eleventyConfig.on('eleventy.before', async ({ dir, runMode, outputMode }) => {
    generateCategoryPages({
    dataFileName: 'categories.json',
    dataFolder: 'src/_data',
    outputFolder: 'src/categories',
    postsFolder: 'src/posts',
    templateFileName: '11ty-cat-page.liquid'
    }, true, true);
  });

So, that afternoon I created a new Node module project on GitHub called Eleventy Generate Category Pages and pulled into the project the guts of the command line utility into something you can execute during the before event.

It works great as far as I can tell in my tests, but I wrote the original module in TypeScript and I'm in module hell trying to get this generated code to run in an Eleventy project. This isn't something I can't figure out, but as you'll see in tomorrow's post, I'm getting shoulder surgery on Wednesday and I don't have time to fix this issue before then.

The issue is getting the right settings in the project's tsconfig.json file so it will execute properly in an Eleventy project. Its not rocket science, I just don't have the time right now to experiment with different settings.

I'll get to fixing this as soon as I can, but I'll be without use of my left hand for almost two months, I don't expect to do a lot of coding while I'm recovering. If someone in the community wants to fix this, I'll make sure I check for pull requests as often I can.

Looking for the community's help.


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