Cloudinary Blog

Why We Integrated Cloudinary at Forestry.io

Integrating Cloudinary with Forestry’s Media Library

At Forestry, we believe that there is a bright future for static HTML sites built with tools like Jekyll and Hugo. These tools can create sites that run well, and are easy to host and maintain, because they don’t require any server-side code.

One drawback of static sites is that they don’t provide a user-friendly content management interface when compared to popular blogging platforms, like WordPress. For this reason, we sought to create the best possible content management engine that integrates easily with static site generators. Developers that use Forestry can connect the Git repository containing their static site and start editing their content in our UI right away. When users save changes to their content, Forestry will update the appropriate files and commit them back to the repository.

Our Git-Backed Media Library

Our Git-Backed Media Library

A major component of Forestry’s interface is its media library. It enables you to upload images and insert them into your content, as well as into front matter fields. Until recently, a user’s only option for storing these uploads was to have the files committed back to their Git repository with the rest of their content.

This has worked pretty well. Storing media in Git is great because it means your images are always available wherever your content is, and accidentally deleting images can easily be reversed by pulling them out of the commit history.

While using Git for images has its advantages, it is not ideal for users who have a large number of images on their site. The larger your Git repo, the slower it is to use. Developers cloning and working on the repo will feel this performance degradation. In addition to increasing development time, a large number of images in your repository will also slow down the building and deployment of your website.

We still offer the option of storing media in the Git repo by default. It’s a great option that requires no additional configuration by our users. Those concerned with scalability and performance, however, needed something better.

Moving the Media Library to Cloudinary

When it came time to explore other persistence options for our media library, we looked to Cloudinary. We were already using Cloudinary to optimize the asset delivery on our own website, though we achieved this by storing the assets in our repository and uploading them to Cloudinary during deployment. By integrating Cloudinary with Forestry’s media library, we could make it much easier for our users to take advantage of its features.

Cloudinary’s image upload API made it easy to implement this integration. When users choose to upload images to their Cloudinary account instead of storing them in their Git repo, the media library UI will display their Cloudinary images instead of the uploads stored in Git. Uploading images through the Forestry UI will send them to Cloudinary; but users also can upload files using Cloudinary’s dashboard and the images will appear in their Forestry media library.

Our early iterations of the feature included an interface to apply some basic image transformations. We later discarded this idea, because Cloudinary has a rich and well-documented image transformation API that you can access by manipulating the image URL. We felt that by enabling developers to insert their own URL transformations in their layouts, it would give them maximum flexibility without requiring us to keep pace with all of Cloudinary’s image transformation options.

Forestry + Cloudinary = heart

Cloudinary support was a highly anticipated feature for us. We are thrilled to offer this option to our users to ease their media storage issues and make it easy for them to deliver optimized assets. If you’d like to know more about how to use Cloudinary with Forestry, check out our blog post on using Cloudinary’s URL transformations with a static site. If you’re interested in seeing what Forestry’s all about, create a free account and try out our demo site.

Recent Blog Posts

10 Website Videos Mistakes and How to Solve Them

It should come as no surprise that video use on the internet is exploding. You can see the dramatic growth of video on the average site in this SpeedCurve blog post.

With the growth in video comes greater bandwidth use, which is not only costly for your IT budget, but for your visitors as well. Beyond the expense, there is the user experience to consider. The heavier the page, the longer it will take to load, and the greater likelihood visitors will abandon your site. Page load speed is also an important factor in SEO ranking, so clearly video is something we need to take seriously and get right. Video is challenging, presenting terms still unfamiliar to developers - like codecs, bitrate and adaptive bitrate streaming. As a result, mistakes are being made in video implementation.

Read more
Android Data Saver: Optimizing Mobile Data Usage with Cloudinary

Over the life of a mobile device, the cost of a cellular data plan often exceeds that of the device itself. To optimize data usage and purge useless data on their mobile devices, users can enable Data Saver from Android 7.0 (API level 24). To do so, users toggle Data Saver in quick settings under the Notification shade or under Settings > Data usage. With Data Saver enabled, apps that aren't whitelisted cannot use cellular data in the background. They are also directed to consume less data while active.

Read more
Introducing the Cloudinary Upload Widget v2

At Cloudinary, we manage the entire pipeline of media assets for thousands of customers of varying sizes from numerous verticals. Cloudinary is an end-to-end solution for all your image and video needs, including upload, storage, administration, manipulation, optimization and dynamic delivery.

Read more
Convert an Image to a 3D Canvas With Cloudinary

Note
This post was cowritten with Daniel Mendoza.
Note
This post was cowritten with Daniel Mendoza.
Note

Famed American poet Henry David Thoreau once said, “This world is but a canvas to our imagination.” And, like your imagination, the transformations you can apply to images with Cloudinary are practically endless. You can even render any flat image to appear three-dimensional and framed on a canvas.

Read more
Mobile Optimization: Optimize Your Mobile-Web User Experience

TL;DR

We live in a visual world, often while on the go, and consumers expect media-rich web content. Accordingly, the loading speed of images and videos is a big factor in user experience. To optimize customer satisfaction with your mobile content, you must focus on the quality, format, and size of your digital assets. With Cloudinary, optimization is simple, not only enhancing your mobile web and app performance, but also upping your SEO game and boosting customer experience.

Read more