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Gem Version

This is an extension for Middleman that allows you to load data from a google spreadsheet into your template data.


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'middleman-google_drive'

And then execute:

$ bundle install

Or install it yourself as:

$ gem install middleman-google_drive


The extension will get loaded automatically, you just need to activate it.

activate :google_drive


There are two ways to load and use spreadsheets. Most the time you just need a single document with multiple worksheets. If you only need a single document...

activate :google_drive, load_sheets: 'mygoogledocumentkey'

You can then use the worksheets in your templates (make sure your worksheets have names that only contain alpha-numeric characters; no spaces or strange things).

<h1>My spreadsheet is called: <%= data.mysheet['title'] %></h1>
<% data.Sheet1.each do [row] %>
    Column one header: <%= row['Column one header'] %>
    Column two header: <%= row['Column two header'] %>
    My column name: <%= row['My column name'] %>
<% end %>

If you would like to load multiple documents from google, you can use a hash when activating the extension:

activate :google_drive, load_sheets: {
    mysheet: google_spreadsheet_key,
    moresheet: another_key

Then you can use the data from any of the loaded documents in your templates:

<h1>My spreadsheet is called: <%= data.mysheet['title'] %></h1>
<% data.mysheet['Sheet1'].each do [row] %>
    Column one header: <%= row['Column one header'] %>
    Column two header: <%= row['Column two header'] %>
    My column name: <%= row['My column name'] %>
<% end %>
<% data.moresheet['Sheet1'].each do [row] %>
    Column one header: <%= row['Column one header'] %>
    Column two header: <%= row['Column two header'] %>
    My column name: <%= row['My column name'] %>
<% end %>


You can load documents similarly to spreadsheets. With documents, you have options: plain text, HTML or ArchieML.

To load a single document as text:

activate :google_drive, load_docs: 'mygoogledocumentkey'

You can now access the text in data.doc. To change the name of the variable name or to load multiple documents, use a hash:

activate :google_drive, load_docs: {
    first_article: 'googledockeyone',
    second_article: 'googledockeytwo'
  • To load HTML, use load_docs_html instead of load_docs.
  • For ArchieML, use load_docs_archieml.

The HTML version of a Google doc will be a complete HTML document that includes <html>, <head> and <body> tags. You'll probably wanna use the sanitize gem to clean things up.

You can then access your document in your templates thusly:

<%=data.first_article %>

If you are loading ArchieML, the data will come in the form of a hash. Both text and html come as strings.


The first time you use this extension, you will have to configure the authentication with Google docs. There are two parts to this. First you will have to register a client application with Google and get API keys. Tarbell has a great explanation on how to do this. You will need to copy the client_secrets.json to ~/.google_client_secrets.json. The first time you run middleman, you will be sent to a Google login prompt in order to associate Middleman with your Google account. You should make sure that the account that you choose has access to the spreadsheets you want to use in Middleman.

You need to make sure that the redirect_urls setting for the client secrets is urn:ietf:wg:oauth:2.0:oob and not another URL.

Protip: If somebody in your org has used this extension or something like it, chances are that person has already created a client secrets file that can be shared with you.

Once you authenticate with Google, a new file ~/.google_drive_oauth2.json will be created containing an key for communicating with Google Drive.

You can override the location of the client secrets and oauth2 JSON files with the environment variables GOOGLE_CLIENT_SECRETS and GOOGLE_DRIVE_OAUTH.

If you plan to run Middleman on a server, you can use Google's server to server authentication. This will kick in if you define the environment variables GOOGLE_OAUTH_PERSON, GOOGLE_OAUTH_ISSUER and either GOOGLE_OAUTH_KEYFILE or GOOGLE_OAUTH_PRIVATE_KEY.


  1. Fork it ( )
  2. Create your feature branch (git checkout -b my-new-feature)
  3. Commit your changes (git commit -am 'Add some feature')
  4. Push to the branch (git push origin my-new-feature)
  5. Create a new Pull Request


Middleman extension for loading content from Google Drive




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