Clouds For Clods: Store And Serve Your Media The Easy Way
“Sync Up” With Cincopa
Cincopa is a service that is looking to perform a range of Cloud-based services for individual site owners who might not have the technical skills to configure them on their own. Among its offerings are:
- Serving Media
- Sending Files
- Remote Access
In all honesty, as far as those final three services are concerned, I don’t see anything that isn’t better and more cheaply done by SkyDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, or any of the other cloud services in the market. What should interest the WordPress user, though, is the first of those offerings: Serving Media. How to enable your users to easily upload media files (image, audio, video, etc.) is a question that comes up again and again for site creators.
What Cincopa does do especially well is to vastly simplify the task/process of storing and serving your media from the cloud. Basically, Cincopa works as a user-friendly client for the average site owner to get the most out of the collective services of WordPress, Amazon Web Services, EdgeCast, and LongTail Video. How does it do that? By walking you through (lotsa handholding) the process of uploading, storing, resizing, encoding, delivering, tracking and skinning your media content. They put a particular emphasis on giving a wide range of different and attractive skins for your galleries and media players.
The basic service is free, with a storage limit of 400MBs and bandwidth of 200MBs per month. If that doesn’t strike you as all that much…it isn’t. To start being able to move more realistic volumes of data, you would need to get a Pro account, which is a steep $USD89.95
There are two ways that you can use Cincopa on your WordPress site. The first way is to do it all through WordPress. Install the plugin, sign up for the service, choose the settings (they are not hugely important, but you can configure it to load a little faster), and you are ready to begin uploading your content. The second way is to sign up for the service, upload your content, then use the shortcodes they generate to add the content to your site.
Those sound different, but based on how the plugin works, are really functionally the same. The plugin is essentially a series of iframes in the guise of pages. Seriously. It offers almost precisely the same content and functionalities as the website. So as to which method to use – it really doesn’t matter. The first is probably slightly quicker.
For those of you who are using BuddyPress, Cincopa also allows a plugin that allows your users to upload their own media to the site. To use that function, though, each user will have to sign up for Cincopa on their own and manage their own accounts. Good luck getting them to commit to that. For those of you who are still interested, this is the Cincopa BuddyPress plugin and here is some worthwhile documentation.
For more information on their service and a little bit of a demo, check out their informational video below: