Hosted Content Importer (HCI)

Hosted Content Importer (HCI) | Bimal Poudel | cached,content,embed,external,Gist


It imports third party hosted contents within WordPress blog. You can define from which url/resource to fetch the content. The original source may be editable by anyone else whom you trust. Thus, it logically empowers you to allow other users to externally edit a particular section of your blogs. And, you do not have to give them any access credentials of your website.

After installation, use shortcode tag [third] with few parameters as:

[third source="markdown" id="" section=""]
  • source is a content processor type.
  • id is a URL or ID given by the third parties.
  • section is an optional parameter to access deeper content.
  • cache is a boolean directive whether to reuse the cached content.

It will then embed remote markdown content inside your blog.
Additionally, it will convert the text into HTML using Parsedown.


source: Where to seek the data (eg. Content Hosting Server). Examples:

  • analytics: ✔ implemented (Google Analytics)
  • file: ✔ implemented (Read from local file)
  • gist: ✔ implemented (Embed Gist Snippes)
  • jotform: ✔ implemented (Embed Web Forms)
  • markdown: ✔ implemented (Parse remote markdown files)
  • qr: ✔ implemented

    1. For Custom Data,
    2. For current page’s URL
  • youtube: ✔ implemented (Embeds a YouTube Video)
  • database: Partially implemented, and left for developers
  • url, api: Work in progress
  • wikipedia: Work in progress, Strategy: Content JSON to Data Section

The list is not limited, you expand it. Join/Fork Development

id: Content ID (unique identifier) of the data you want. Often:

  • Full URLs
  • Database IDs
  • Resource IDs provided by Service Providers eg. YouTube Video ID, JotForm Form ID, …
  • Full Path of a Local File

section: Additional parameter to identify the specific section of the content.

Example: Parsing a remote .md file

[third source="markdown" id="" section=""]

Learn to write your .md file.

Example: Embeding a gist code from GitHub

[third source="gist" id="000000000000" section="filename.php"]

Create your gists at GitHub.

Example: Embeding a JotForm

[third source="jotform" id="000000000000" section=""]

Create your own web form at JotForm website.

Example: Reading a server’s local file

[third source="file" id="/tmp/readme.txt" section=""]

It has to be a static file for security reasons. For example, if you read the .php file, it will NOT process it, rather read its contents only. Your can contain valid HTML data, css and javascripts.

Example: Accessing database – Expand it yourself

[third source="database" id="0" section="recent"]

Detailed implementations are left for the developers because of the nature. It is a proof of concept work. Please feel free to modify/expand it.

Example: Custom QR Code

[third source="qr" id="YOUR DATA" section=""]

Example: QR Code for Current Page (Full URL)

[third source="qr" id="url" section="internal"]

The above example is a full code. If you embed it anywhere, it lets your users copy that page’s URL into their mobile.

Example: Embeding a YouTube Video

[third source="youtube" id="v00000000000" section=""]

Choose your video from YouTube.

Personalized Content Processors

You may often consider writing your own Content Processor.
Refer to Custom Content Processor section in [Other Notes] tab.

Custom Content Processors

If you want to develop your own Content Processor, it is much easier now.
Just create a tiny class file inside classes/processors as like one of the existing one. Simple examples are YouTube, JotForm and Gist processors.

Minimum requirements

  1. File name:
  2. Method: public function fetch($form_id = null, $section = null).
    • Process your content.
    • Return HTML string.
    • For references, see
  3. Use as: [third source="YOURNAME" section=""]

Click for real examples.

Just that much easy drop-in replacement.

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Used from


Method #1

  • Go to your WP Admin > Plugins > Add New page.
  • Search for “Hosted Content Importer”.
  • Click install. Click activate.

Method #2

  • Download this plugin as a .zip file.
  • Go to WP Admin > Plugins > Add new > Upload Plugin.
  • Upload the .zip file and activate the plugin.

Method #3

  • Download the file
  • Unzip the file on your computer.
  • Upload folder hosted-content-importer (you just unziped) to /wp-content/plugins/ directory.
  • Activate the plugin through the WP Admin > Plugins menu.

Click on how to install a WordPress Plugin for more details.

Plugin author

Bimal Poudel

Plugin official website address
If you encounter problems in using the Hosted Content Importer (HCI) plugin, you can comment below, and I will try my best to help you solve the problem

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