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frugal technology, simple living and guerrilla large-appliance repair
Tue, 18 Jul 2017

At least on Windows 10 in 2017, OpenShot is (mostly) useless

I knew that OpenShot was never the absolute "best" video editing application out there, but it was free, it mostly wworked and, more importantly, I knew how to use it.

I ran OpenShot in Fedora Linux for a few years and made dozens of servicable videos on it.

Going from Version 1 to Version 2 was supposed to open (pun not intended) a new era for OpenShot, but instead it made the program unusable. Once OpenShot crossed into 2.x territory, I had plenty of problems with dependencies in Linux, and now that I'm on Windows 10 and there is a version for that platform, it does install but can't seem to do anything complex or even export a simple video without crashing.

So I'm casting (pun not intended) for new video-editing solutions. On the table are KDEnlive for Linux and anything proprietary on Windows that my company will buy me.

Not on the table unless I get super desperate is Blender. It just looks too damn complicated to do just about anything with that application.

So what do you think I should go for? At this point, I'm looking at remaining on Windows, but I do have a Linux laptop that I can dedicate to video editing if it comes to that.

Update: I was able to output a video on my new laptop with OpenShot 2.3.1. I have 2.3.4 on my Windows 7 desktop. I hope updating on the laptop won't break the program.

Further update: The .mp4 produced by OpenShot wouldn't upload successfully to YouTube.

Fri, 14 Sep 2012

The professional-level Lightworks video editor is coming to Linux

It's been in the works for a while, promised but not yet delivered, now promised again for Oct. 30, 2012: The Lightworks video-editing software is coming to Linux, specifically to Ubuntu 12.04 (and perhaps others after that).

Having really never heard of Lightworks, which the OMG!Ubuntu post above says was used to edit such professional films as "The King's Speech" and "Hugo." The project was open-sourced in 2010, and there is already a Windows build available. I'm somewhat excited by that prospect in itself, as I haven't yet come up with a Windows video-editing workflow/application that I can both use myself and recommend to others.

You can bet I'll be trying this out asap and waiting for the Linux version. If it only runs on Ubuntu, a video-editing app that can really get the job done is enough for me to choose my OS accordingly. That's a big "if." I'll have to get some actual time in front of Lightworks before I can make any judgments.

Wed, 09 May 2012

Video-editing update: LiVES, KDEnlive and OpenShot

I really wanted LiVES to work. I installed it in Debian Squeeze, but I couldn't figure out the first thing about how to use it. I figured out how to play a clip, but it wouldn't work -- I just got a blank window on my screen.

It really makes me appreciate how well OpenShot works.

Not that I'm against trying everything, because I'm not. Right after LiVES failed me, I installed the KDEnlive video editing application on my Debian system. While I haven't actually edited anything in it just yet, I have poked around in the interface and imported and played with a few clips.

I hope to try it soon for a full video, but I'll have to do a little reading first so I know what I'm doing.

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Fri, 11 Nov 2011

Here's my latest video edited in OpenShot -- I refine my technique in organizing tracks

Just because I'm writing about how I'm editing these videos in OpenShot (including this one a few days ago), don't think that I'm some kind of video-editing expert.

I'm learning. And I'm excited about it. Beats the alternative, don't you think?

In the video I just cut today, from footage provided by L.A. Daily News reporter Susan Abram, I used OpenShot 1.4.0 in Debian Squeeze, I am refining the way I use multiple tracks to organize and edit the video.

First, here's the video itself (delivered by Brightcove):

Here's a screen-grab of my OpenShot window as it looked after the video was edited. Notice that I "name" the clips in the filenames. Once I gather the clips together, I watch all of them and label those I'm going to use.

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Tue, 08 Nov 2011

Tapping deeper into the OpenShot video editor

Here's a video I put together today with OpenShot 1.4.0 in Debian Squeeze (I've been using the OpenShot .deb package from the OpenShot Launchpad page to make sure I had the latest version):

It's of the new Muse School in Calabasas that Suzy Amis Cameron and husband James Cameron (yes, that James Cameron) created, and it contains a mix of video, audio and still images shot by Los Angeles Daily News staff photographer Dean Musgrove.

Once he brought me the raw footage and I saw that it featured children from the school singing a song, I knew I wanted to mix stills and video over the audio track.

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Tue, 18 Oct 2011

Back to OpenShot for video editing in Debian GNU/Linux

I decided to give the OpenShot video editor for Linux another try.

Not entirely satisfied with my last effort in OpenShot, I wanted to try something else, and that something turned out to be Blender's Video Sequence Editor feature. That was a resounding failure. I had no idea how to do just about anything, and I find the Blender UI extremely uninviting.

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