squarespace tag clouds

Ah the ever so controversial tag cloud.  I can't think of another "Web 2.0" paradigm that has generated so much love AND hate.  Just google "I hate tag clouds" or "tag clouds suck", and read away.  There is no denying that tag clouds are a unique and beautiful way of depicting tags based on their popularity or importance.  But many detractors will say that tag clouds actually make it harder to find what you're looking for.

Well, love it or hate it, tag clouds will soon be available on Squarespace (currently in Beta).  After the successful launch of social widgets last month, we wanted to ride the momentum and knock out some low hanging fruit.  So I personally took on Mr. Tag Cloud.  After just a month (including design/development/testing), I'm proud to say the Squarespace Tag Cloud module is ready to roll.

Here's a quick summary of the features:

  • Creates a tag cloud using tags (and/or categories) from a Squarespace Journal module
  • Two preset styles:
    • Cloud - displays tags in the familiar cloud format
    • List - displays tags in a list format
  • Sort alphabetically or by frequency
  • Ability to configure the font magnification between the least and most frequent tags
  • Ability to configure the font opacity between the least and most frequent tags
  • Ability to configure the number of total tags to show
  • Ability to configure a minimum count filter (i.e. only show tags with counts > X)
  • Option to show tag with or without tag count (e.g. "ipad" vs "ipad (22)") 


Tag Cloud Configuration Screen

Tag Cloud Widget (cloud preset) Tag Cloud Widget (list preset)


In addition, the Tag Cloud module can be configured as a page on your site, which will allow you to build much wider clouds using the extra real estate.  Here's one from my site:

Tag Cloud Page 

Well there you have it.  As mentioned, the Tag Cloud module is currently in Beta but should be available to everyone very soon!  Let the debate rage on! 


cake financial acquired by etrade



It was announced today that Etrade acquired a little known social finance company in San Francisco named Cake Financial (see Tech Crunch article).  So why am I blogging about a boring acquisition in the financial services world?  

Well, let's rewind to 3 years ago when I was working at this financial services startup called Finaplex.  I had been there over 2 years, and the company was headed in the wrong direction.  In other words, I was ready to move on.  My job search came down to two companies: WagerWorks/IGT (which I ultimately joined) and this little startup called Portfolia.

Now type http://www.portfolia.com in your browser and tell me what you see ..... Yup, Cake Financial!!  Motherfucker!  (btw they changed names.)

Now before anyone (including myself) feels too sorry for me, I never actually got an offer letter.  They were incredibly unprofessional during their interview process (which I don't want to get into) so things just didn't work out.  

Regardless, I still yelled the words "$%@#!@#$" when I read the news this morning.  But who knows, the terms weren't announced so maybe it wasn't even that big of deal (Etrade isn't exactly kicking ass with their sub-$2 stock price).  

Things happen for a reason, and somehow I ended up here in New York City.