WordPress.com Update

The folks at WordPress.com have decided (after much deliberation) that they will not be allowing the Hipcast player on their servers.

Our players will continue to work on WordPress blogs not hosted through WordPress.com. We’ve decided to entertain the idea of hosting user blogs on Hipcast to provide an alternative for our customers who fall in this category.

Who wants a Hipcast blog?

Helpcast – Customizing Hipcast Media Players

Even though our media player looks awesome, it may not fit in with everyone’s blog. That is why we have customization for our players on a per-blog basis. Set up your theme once on a blog and all published players thereafter will reflect your new look!

If you didn’t see the post on uploading multimedia, it is called Helpcast – Blogging with Audio and Video.

This tutorial also assumes that you have a blog set up. If you don’t, read this tutorial first: Helpcast Setting up my first blog.

Start by logging into Hipcast and navigating to Show Blogs in the Blogs tab.

Then navigate to the blog item you wish to edit and click Blog Preferences.

Select the Audio Player Style tab and you should be presented with a series of color and style options. (NOTE: You will only see the Audio and Video Player style tabs if you have uploaded or recorded Audio or Video Files)

As you make changes you can click the Preview Preferences button to refresh the player. Notice how I made the bar slightly longer and changed the background color to match with my blog’s theme. You can experiment to see what you like! If you want people to be able to download your file, or you want iPhone users to be able to listen to it, click the Publish MP3 Link radio button. Then click save changes. (NOTE: The colors are all in hexadecimal format. If you don’t know hexadecimal, click the palette and select the colors manually.)

You’re done. All that is left is for you to go back to your audio or video file and publish it to your blog. Here is what mine looked like:

Pretty neat. As usual, comment if you have any questions or comments, and let me know what tutorial you’d like to see next!

Helpcast – Blogging with Audio and Video

Once you have your blog set up with Hipcast it is a very simple matter to publish your audio and video files in updates. I’ll be starting from where I left off with my last post: Helpcast – Setting up my first blog. I’m currently ignoring the player theme and advanced blog options for simplicities sake, but I will be posting a tutorial on that later.

In this example, I will be uploading an audio file and publishing it to the Blogger blog that I used in the last tutorial. It looks like this:

Pretty bland, but Blogger has a huge array of tools to spice it up. Start by logging into Hipcast and selecting Upload Audio under the Audio tab.

Complete the form by selecting the file (mp3, wav, etc) and giving it a title and description for organizational purposes.

Then select the file quality (I usually pick the highest since most users can stream it easily) :

Then select the blog or feed that you set up earlier if you do not need to customize your player and click Upload. (UPDATE: Customization Instructions)

Once the file is uploaded, it will take a moment (depending on file size) to convert it to a usable web format and post it to your blog. You may want to go edit the post on your blog once it completes to fine tune and relocate the player. Unless you have modified any of the posting options, you should end up with something like this:

The next tutorial will cover the advanced blog features and customizing your media player.

Helpcast – Setting up my first blog

One of the coolest features that Hipcast has is blog integration, so we’re going to be setting up a blog for video and audio posts. I will be using Blogger (formally blogspot) since the setup for it is mostly automated. If you already have a google account, creating a blog with blogger is just a few clicks.

Once you’re set up with blogger and signed in, you should see a screen something like this:

After your blog is set up, simply navigate to the Blogs section of the Hipcast site, and select Add New Blog.

Then type in an identifier for you blog, select Blogger or your blog type, then Save and Update. (NOTE: Some blog types like WordPress require you to enable XML-RPC publishing. You can google the instructions on how to do that if you’re unfamiliar.)

If you are logged into your google account, you will be prompted that Hipcast is attempting to access your Blogger account. Simply click, Grant Access, and you’re done.

You now have a fully featured Audio or Video Blog! In the next update we will be uploading a multimedia file and posting it to our blog.

Introducing Helpcast – Help for Hipcast

Over the coming weeks there will be a series of guides outlining the basic and advanced functionality of the Hipcast system. A large portion of our search traffic comes from people googling “how do I (insert feature) on hipcast”. The purpose of Helpcast is to provide an accessible and search engine optimized how-to library.

If there are any topics that you’d like covered in this section, comment on this post. Thanks!