Create Digital and Storage

Storage space in Create Digital is limited, so users may want to consider connecting to Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) or another storage service. As of May 2023, they offer a generous free tier. Learn more about their pricing structure: https://aws.amazon.com/s3/pricing/.  

To create an AWS account, visit https://aws.amazon.com/ and select Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3). You may want to consider adding multi-factor authentication (MFA) for security.

Create a bucket in S3 and upload your files, as described in the documentation below. Once your files have been added, you can set up S3 to an Omeka Classic, Omeka S, or WordPress installation. View the documentation for each below:

Omeka Classic: https://support.reclaimhosting.com/hc/en-us/articles/1500005621161-Setting-up-S3-storage-with-Omeka-Classic#setting-up-your-s3-0-1

Omeka S: https://support.reclaimhosting.com/hc/en-us/articles/9358435888279–Setting-up-S3-storage-with-Omeka-S

WordPress: https://www.codeinwp.com/blog/wordpress-s3-guide/

We have tested the free version of WP Offload Media Lite, one of the recommended S3 plugins. An advantage of this plugin is that it is easy to install and configure, but a disadvantage is that the free version will only work with newly uploaded files. If you are starting a new WordPress instance, it should work well, but if you are working with an existing instance this may not suit your needs.

Working with Scalar is more complicated. If you are interested in storing Scalar files in S3, please contact digres@mailbox.sc.edu to discuss options.

When You Leave (Migration Options)

You will lose access to your Create Digital domain after you graduate (or otherwise discontinue) from the University of South Carolina, so it’s essential that you back up your site content prior to leaving campus. You have a number of options: pay Reclaim Hosting to keep everything and migrate to your own domain, download your entire site to store on your computer, or move everything over to another hosting provider.

Using Reclaim Hosting

Create Digital is hosted through Reclaim Hosting, a company that started out of the University of Mary Washington. If you are leaving the college, you can migrate your webspace from Create Digital to our hosting provider, Reclaim Hosting. Detailed instructions can be found here.

Downloading a Backup of Your Site

If you’re not sure what you’d like to do with your website or content, you can download a full backup directly from your cPanel. This would also be the route to take if you’re migrating your site to a hosting provider other than Reclaim.

1. Log into cPanel.

2. Head to the Files section of cPanel, click on the Backup icon.

3. Under Full Backup, click Generate/ Download a Full Website Backup.

4. On the next page, select the Home Directory option from the Backup Destination drop-down menu.

5. For Email Address, select whether or not you wish to receive an email notification once the backup is complete. (You may also change the notification email address in the provided field if you wish.) Click Generate Backup.

6. Consider storing your backup in multiple places, like on a flash drive, on your computer’s hard drive, and also in a cloud-based account.

7. Contact your new hosting provider for instructions on how to transfer your content.

WordPress

If you would like to move your WordPress site from your Create Digital account to either a free WordPress.com account or a different paid host, you can do so with the export system built into WordPress. Please see Exporting from WordPress.

Public Domain and WordPress

Public domain works are free from copyright restrictions. This means that the work can be used by the public in any way and has no attribution requirement.  

Through Creative Commons, a work can be placed into the public domain through the “No Rights Reserved” (CC0) license. This license is used by copyright holders who wish to release a work from copyright restrictions.

It should be added that there is another Public Domain license that Creative Commons offers. This is known as “No Known Copyright,” or public domain mark. This license should not be used by creators who wish to release their own works from copyright restrictions. For that purpose, use the CC0 license.  

Adding a “CC0” License to WordPress

To use the “No Rights Reserved” (CC0) license, navigate to the Creative Commons Public Domain page. Under the “CC0” heading, select “use this tool.” This will bring you to a form that will generate code for your WordPress site.

Creative Commons and WordPress

On a WordPress site, you may want to add a Creative Commons license. Creative Commons licenses will allow others to share your work, making it more open and accessible. The amount of freedom that others have with your work is dependent on the type of license you select.  

The Creative Commons “Choose a License” feature allows users to take a quick quiz to determine what license is best for them. For example, a license that Creative Commons offers is the CC Attribution License (CC BY 4.0). This license will allow others to share and adapt your work if attribution is provided.  

Once a license is selected using the “Choose a License” feature, Creative Commons will generate code that can be embedded into WordPress. You can apply a Creative Commons license to a WordPress post or page, or you can apply a Creative Commons license to your entire site. 

Adding a Creative Commons License to a Single Work 

To add a Creative Commons license to a post on your WordPress site, you will need to embed the license HTML into a block on the post editing screen. To learn how to embed Creative Commons license into a post, see the following tutorial video.

Adding a Creative Commons License to an Entire Site 

A widget at the footer of your site is the best way to apply a Creative Commons license. A widget will appear at the foot of every webpage that a viewer navigates to. See the following tutorial video to learn how to place a Creative Commons license into a widget at the footer of your site.

Social Media Summary

As mentioned in the opening paragraph, talking about social media is an ever-changing and moving target and this article can never be truly comprehensive. The goal of Create Digital is to have you thinking more critically about where you put your content, not that you don’t participate in these networks which still have a lot of value, but rather that you own the work you create. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and others all have different audiences and the more places you push your content to, the more opportunities for discussion and feedback you’ll receive. The ability to network with an increased amount of people that isn’t reliant on face-to-face meetings is a powerful change in how we interact on the web and the value of it. As you begin to explore social media the best recommendation would be to choose a space you want to explore and really dive in. Follow as many people as possible, talk to them, respond to their work, and you’re more likely to get responses in return that start to build that sense of community for you.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the professional resumé of social networks. It mixes the ability to keep an updated resume of where you work and what your accomplishments are with a social aspect of having people recommend you and comment on your work. Most users find LinkedIn helpful not as a day-to-day network they use, but rather when they’re searching for a new job and want to find people they know that might have connections. The old saying “It’s who you know” when finding a job or making a connection is particularly relevant here where those connections can be exposed to you (You know this person who works for the company of one of Bill Gate’s sons, and the VP went to high school with you).

Twitter

While no longer the new kid on the block, Twitter has gained momentum. Users are limited to 280 characters. It’s a conversational platform for interacting with people. It’s used heavily at conferences and many choose this as a social network for really networking with peers and others in their community as well as people they might not ever meet in real life. You can follow as many people as you want and it’s a great way of having a stream of information about “what’s happening” with people and groups you’re interested in. One powerful development of Twitter is that celebrities embrace it as a way to speak directly to their fans without having the message interpreted through other media and journalism with a slant. The ability to search various topics or hashtags (keywords) and see a running stream of what people are saying about that topic is also a very powerful way of gauging reaction to ideas and events. It’s a great idea to experiment with a Twitter account by signing up, adding a profile picture and information about yourself, following a group of people, and interacting with it daily. While the gratification may not be immediate, it’s one of those social networks where the more you put into it the more you will get out of it.

Embedding a Tweet 

In WordPress, you can embed a tweet into a blog post. The tweet will be automatically formatted to match what it looks like on Twitter. In addition, viewers of your blog can interact with an embedded tweet, and even “like” it if they are logged into their Twitter account.

Embedding a Twitter Timeline

WordPress allows users to embed their Twitter timeline directly into a website in the form of a widget. Widgets can be placed in several areas of a site, and are easy for viewers to see and interact with from the site’s front page. 

Facebook

Facebook

The majority of folks that will read this likely have a Facebook account. With over 1 billion active users it’s by far one of the more popular social networks. Many treat Facebook as a semi-personal space, one reserved for family and friends to share photos and highlights of what’s happening in their lives. Facebook also supports “Groups” for sharing amongst a smaller set of individuals regularly, and “Pages” which are less personal and more public-facing profiles meant for organizations and businesses. There are plenty of applications that make it easy to publish a link to the work you do on your blog and your participation in other networks back into your Facebook profile. In general it’s a good practice and can often lead to interesting conversations with different groups of folks. This practice of publishing elsewhere and then feeding into Facebook is desired over the alternative, using Facebook for all content and then pushing it out to other communities. The main reason for this is that privacy concerns over how different people can view content on Facebook have changed often enough to leave users concerned. There’s also never any certainty of sustainability with any of these social networks (remember MySpace or Friendster?) no matter how popular, so publishing in your own space and then pushing out to others makes a lot of sense. The key takeaway is that Facebook is a great personal network and can also be the starting point for some of these larger professional discussions should you decide to use it that way.

LAMP Environments

When you sign up for UofSC Create Digital, you get space on a Web host that is associated with the project. There are a few things you need to know about the Web host that will make it easier to understand what you can do with your new space.

The Web Server

The Web server is the main computer that is associated with the Create Digital hosting account. It is literally a computer – a computer that has special software on it that allows it to be accessible via the Web. The files that run your applications, images or video you upload, or any other files you upload into your Web space are stored on this server.

(For comparison’s sake, your desktop or laptop computer, by default, doesn’t allow this; I can’t access files on your computer through a Web browser by default. You CAN actually install Web server software on your own computer, essentially making your files accessible over the Web.)

In order to run, a Web server has an operating system installed and some kind of Web server software. The Create Digital server runs the 'LINUX' operating system and an 'APACHE' Web server.

The Database Server

In addition to the Web server, there is also an associated database server. This is another computer, but it is configured with software that allows it to host databases. It is also connected to your Web server so that your applications (hosted on the Web server) can retrieve data (from databases hosted on the database server).

Databases come in LOTS of varieties. The kind of database you can use for a Web application depends on the kind of software that’s installed on the database server. The Create Digital server can run 'MYSQL' databases.

The Programming Language

When you install open-source software on your Web account, it’s going to be written in some programming language. Your Web server has software installed on it that allows it to understand different languages. If you install software that’s written in a language that your Web server doesn’t read, it won’t work.

The Create Digital server has software installed on it that allows it to understand 'PHP''PERL', and 'PYTHON'.

Add it Together: LAMP

If you take a look at all the descriptions above, you can determine that we are running what is known as a LAMP server for uofscreate.org:

  • Linux (operating system)
  • Apache (Web server)
  • MySQL (database server)
  • PHP/PERL/PYTHON (programming language)

Applications that are written for LAMP environments will, presumably, run on the server. HOWEVER, some applications do require additional extensions or libraries that aren’t included, by default, in a LAMP environment. The applications you can install via Installatron (in cPanel) should work just fine.

What makes LAMP environments special is that all of the component parts are open-source. Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP, PERL, and PYTHON are all open-source programs or systems. Anyone can download them (for free) and install them. Anyone can also modify them and redistribute them. As a result, there are lots of online resources for using these systems that have been built by their communities of users. But, also as a result, since you’re not paying for these systems, you can’t just call up a company and ask them to fix a problem.

Map Your Domain to Tumblr

Mapping your domain is an important part of usccreate.org; it reinforces the idea that you don’t necessary need to host all your own applications. You should, however, be mindful of making your web presences part of a domain you control. If you would like to map a subdomain and have not yet created it, use this tutorial on creating subdomains before proceeding. To map your domain, or a subdomain, to Tumblr, use these steps:

  1. Login to usccreate.org with your network username and password.
    log in
  2. Once logged in you’ll be at the homepage of your control panel. The easiest way to navigate the cPanel is using the search feature in the top right panel. Click the Search box and type “DNS” (without the quotes). As you type, the cPanel page will begin to narrow down results. Find and click on Zone Editor to continue.
    zone editor
  3. To the right of your domain, click “Manage“.  manage
  4. Find the domain, or subdomain, you want to map to Tumblr in the list of Zone File Records. Under the Action column, click Edit  zone file records
  5. Leave the Name, and TTL fields set to their defaults. Update the Type drop-down menu to CNAME, and the Address field to domains.tumblr.com. Click Save Record when you are done.   cname
  6. Visit the Tumblr website, and login with your Tumblr username and password. 

  7. After logging in, click the Tumblr Settings icon.

    Settings

  8. In the right panel, select the blog you’d like to map.    tumblr connect
  9. On the Tumblog you’d like to use, under Username, click the pencil icon to edit.

    username

  10. Check the Use a custom domain checkbox. Type the name of the domain or subdomain you want to map to Tumblr into the box, then click Test your domain.

    tumblr username

  11. If your domain mapping was successful, you’ll see a message that your domain is now pointing to Tumblr. Click the Save button before leaving the page. Keep in mind that it may take up to 72 hours for your domain or subdomain to correctly point all visitors to the correct location.