Static Publishing

The Static Publishing service is designed to meet the requirements of customers who want to be able to manage assets such as PDFs, animated GIFs, zip files and Microsoft Office files in Content Hub. This allows product manuals, assembly instructions and other related artefacts to be more easily incorporated in a Product Details Page, for example. These assets are referred to as "static" assets because the original assets will be served directly using a Static URL and there is no requirement for the assets to be manipulated on the fly using the Dynamic Media service. Static URLs are explained in the Publishing Assets section.

The Dynamic Media platform includes Dynamic Imaging, a highly optimised image manipulation engine, as well as Dynamic Video, a service to make it easier to serve a video transcoded for different formats and sizes. When an image or video asset is published it is served using a URL, now referred to as a Dynamic URL, that is managed by Dynamic Media. Images can be served both statically and dynamically as explained in the Images section below.

Note that text and video can currently only be served dynamically. When these type of assets are published only a Dynamic URL will be shown.

Static Publishing is an optional service and is turned off by default. To request the service please contact your Customer Success Manager.

On this page we'll explain how you can make use of the service.

Previewing assets

As part of the Static Publishing service, Content Hub now supports several new types of assets, including PDFs and Microsoft Office documents. These assets are uploaded in the usual way, manually from the Content Hub user interface or via a bulk upload. Content Hub provides previews for both PDFs and animated GIFs.

An example PDF preview is shown below. Once the PDF is uploaded, clicking the eye icon (1) will show show the contents of the PDF in the preview window, allowing the user to navigate through the document page by page.

Previewing a PDF
Previewing a PDF

Publishing assets

When an asset is published, by choosing the "Publish" button on the asset properties pane, the asset URL is shown. Depending on the asset type, this will be a Static URL, Dynamic URL or both. Asset types of "document" or "other" will be served from a Static URL, as shown for the example PDF below.

  1. This is the Static URL that you will use to consume the PDF

  2. The MIME Type. For a PDF this will be application/pdf. If this asset is part of a set, then the MIME Type is returned in the set metadata as explained in the Sets section.

The Static URL will contain your own subdomain, for example

http://mysubdomain.bigcontent.io/v1/static/assetname
The static URL for a PDF
The static URL for a PDF

Images

Images can be served both dynamically and statically. In the example below we've uploaded a .png file and published it. Notice that two URLs are displayed in the asset properties screen.

  1. This is the Dynamic URL that will be used to serve the image from the Dynamic Imaging service. You can make use of all the normal features such as cropping, changing the image size and quality, by referencing the image using this URL.

  2. This is the Static URL. Use this URL to consume the image at full quality and without any image manipulation.

A PNG that can asset can be served statically and dynamically
A PNG that can asset can be served statically and dynamically

Both the Dynamic and Static URLs point to the same image, but only the Dynamic URL can be used to manipulate the image with Dynamic Imaging.

In some cases you may not want certain images types to be served statically and so can choose to exclude that image MIME type, as explained in the whitelist section. By default the whitelist is empty, so in this example you would have to request that the MIME type image/png is added. If the image/png MIME type is not included in the whitelist, then only the DynamicURL is shown.

If image/png is not on the asset whitelist, the image can only be served dynamically
If image/png is not on the asset whitelist, the image can only be served dynamically

SVGs

SVGs are served dynamically from x1 rather than i1 as is the case for other image types asset types. To find the Dynamic URL for SVG assets, use the Product Customization app rather than Content Hub. Expand the section below for more details.

  • Open the Product Customization app

  • Find the SVG you want and choose "Get Live URL" from that asset's menu as shown in the image below

  • The URL will be copied to the clipboard. The URL will be something like:

http://x1.adis.ws/v1/media/graphics/i/ampproduct/Armchair-configurator
Getting the dynamic URL for a SVG asset
Getting the dynamic URL for a SVG asset

The Asset Whitelist

In order to use the Static Publishing service, you need to provide Amplience with a whitelist of MIME Types that can be served to you statically. This request should be made via your Customer Success Manager.

If a MIME Type is not included in the whitelist you can still upload the asset and publish it, but no Static URL will be displayed. If you remove a MIME Type from the whitelist then any attempt to consume the asset from the Static URL will fail. By default the whitelist will be empty so nothing can be published statically until you request it.

For example, you may choose not to make full quality TIFF product images available, so you can choose to exclude TIFF from your static publishing whitelist. This will ensure that all assets with the MIME Type image/tiff are only served via a Dynamic URL. This is useful in the cases where you only want to consume a compressed version of an image via Dynamic Imaging.

The following are assets are in the "Document" category:

Description File extension MIME type
Adobe Acrobat pdf application/pdf
Microsoft Powerpoint ppt application/vnd.ms-
Microsoft Powerpoint ppt application/vnd.ms-powerpoint
Microsoft Powerpoint (OpenXML format) pptx application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.presentationml.presentation
OpenDocument Presentation odp application/vnd.oasis.opendocument.presentation
Rich Text Format rtf application/rtf
Microsoft Word doc application/msword
Microsoft Word (OpenXML format) docx application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document

These assets are in the "Other" category.

Description File extension MIME type
Adobe InDesign indd application/x-indesign
Adobe Premiere Pro prj application/octet-stream
Adobe Photoshop psdx application/octet-stream
Amazon Kindle azw3 application/octet-stream
Amazon Kindle azw4 application/octet-stream
Apple iBooks Author iba application/octet-stream
AppleiBooks ibooks application/x-ibooks+zip
Apple Keynote key application/x-iwork-keynote-sffkey
Apple Numbers numbers application/x-iwork-numbers-sffnumbers
Apple Pages pages application/x-iwork-pages-sffpages
Zip Archive zip application/zip

The MIME types for images may be added to the whitelist and served from both dynamic and static URLs include the following. If the MIME type is not included in the whitelist, then the image will only a Dynamic URL will be shown.

A list of image MIME types that can be served both statically and dynamically is shown below.

File extension MIME type
jpg, jpeg image/jpeg
png image/png
tif, tiff image/tiff
gif image/gif
bmp image/bmp
svg image/svg+xml

Sets

Sets have been modified to allow "other" and "document" asset types, such as PDFs and Microsoft Office files, to be included. In the example below we've created a media set consisting of an image and a PDF file.

A media set with an image and a PDF
A media set with an image and a PDF

Sets are served using Dynamic Media, so when the set is published a Dynamic URL is shown and this URL can be used to get information about the set.

Getting the set URL
Getting the set URL

The metadata of each asset in the set can be retrieved by adding ".json" to its URL. For example, taking the URL for the media set created previously:

https://i1.adis.ws/s/ampevalmaster/Armchair%20with%20cleaning%20guide.json

will return the following:

{"name":"Armchair with cleaning guide","items":[{"type":"img","src":"http://i1.adis.ws/i/ampevalmaster/BlueArmchairExample","width":1221,"height":1129,"format":"PNG","opaque":"true"},{"type":"static","name":"Upholstery Cleaning","MIMEType":"application/pdf"}]}

For more details see the playground documentation for metadata.

Notice that for static assets the asset type with be "static" and the MIME Type will be included so we know how to consume it. For the image we just consume it using Dynamic Media.

Animated GIFs

Animated GIFs can now be served as both static and dynamic assets. When an animated GIF is consumed using Dynamic Imaging, it is treated as a still image and only the first frame is displayed. Consuming the animated GIF statically will show the full animation.

The preview feature in Content Hub has been updated to provide a full animated GIF preview. The example below shows an animated shopping bag GIF that has been uploaded.

Previewing an animated GIF
Previewing an animated GIF

When the animated GIF is published, both a Dynamic (1) and Static URL (2) will be displayed.

An animated GIF with a static and dynamic URL
An animated GIF with a static and dynamic URL
  1. The Dynamic URL. You can consume the animated GIF using Dynamic Imaging, but it will be treated as a still image. Only the first frame will be shown, it will not be animated.

  2. To show the animated GIF including the animation use the Static URL.

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