Appwrite Loves Open Source: Why I Choose To Support Kdenlive

August 3, 2022

To me, the open-source community is about coming together and building cool stuff that empowers others. This shouldn’t be limited to building developer oriented tools like TensorFlow and Jest. Open-source can also empower those outside the developer community by removing barriers to accessing software tools.

Open-source is at the heart ❤️ of everything we do at Appwrite, and we want to enable and foster the open-source community that helped us grow to over 16K stars ⭐ on GitHub. At Appwrite, we recognize how difficult it can be to build open-source software. Sustaining a project and a team takes enormous commitment, and getting adequate funding is difficult. This is especially true to open-source projects that don’t face developers, making it harder to attract contributors. That’s why Appwrite allows each engineer to pick an open-source project to sponsor.

When Appwrite offered to sponsor an open-source project on my behalf, I jumped at this opportunity to support Kdenlive.

Equal Representation in Media

Everyone deserves a voice. Creating videos to raise awareness to problems, tell stories, or share cool ideas is an important avenue to be heard in today’s world. The problem is that while videos are effective, they are also expensive to make. Even with increasingly cheap access to relatively high quality cameras and microphones, video editing software keeps getting more expensive.

With Adobe Premiere Pro priced $52.99 USD/month and Final Cut Pro priced at $299.99 USD, their high price shuts out many individuals and communities from having a voice. This can lead to many important stories and ideas to be underrepresented, even in the age of the internet. Young creators, or those with less funds to create videos (like myself when I was younger), can’t express their ideas. Entire segments of the population might be shutout of YouTube, TikTok, and other media platforms as a result. These segments of the population are often most in need of a voice.

What is Kdenlive?

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Kdenlive is a fully featured video editor and provides a multitrack workflow similar to other mainstream software like Adobe Premiere. Kdenlive comes packaged with enough video/audio effects, transitions, fonts, configurable hot-keys, and supported input/output formats that allows a user to develop a workflow just as effective and efficient as Adobe Premiere. To rival the industry is surprisingly difficult to achieve with creative software, especially for an open-source project, because of the amount proprietary knowledge required to replicate the vast set of features.

Why I choose Kdenlive

What I love about Kdenlive is their regularity and transparency in communication. They are fully transparent about their road maps, efforts, community, and how they spend donation money. Each year, Kdenlive creates a report detailing everything that they do in a year, and their plans moving forward.

Here are some upcoming features I’m excited about. The Kdenlive team is working to implement nested timelines like in Premiere Pro. This allows you to work on small timelines for different parts of a production, then nest them within a larger timeline to apply affects to them together, reducing repetitive work. Another feature is “embedded effect”, which allows you to apply effects to all clips at once, instead of one by one (like in Premiere :P). They’re also working to increase responsiveness and UX of the software.

Like Appwrite, Kdenlive aims to provide an open-source alternative to existing expensive, close-sourced software. Kdenlive is also not a carbon copy of Premiere Pro, they try to fill a similar niche, but have their own opinions and philosophy behind development. What’s not to love?

Learn More About Appwrite

Appwrite is an open-source Backend-as-a-Service (BaaS), packaged as a set of Docker micro-services, to give developers of any background the tools necessary to build modern apps quickly and securely.

Check out Appwrite as the backend for your next web, Flutter, or server-side application. Here are some handy links for more information:

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