Thursday, December 29, 2011

Announcing the Novacut 11.12 components

This was a shorter development cycle because this month we began a new release process, which includes a week-long quality step leading up to the release. The goal is to deliver higher quality stable releases and to deliver them more smoothly.

Note that this week-long quality step wont cut into development time as we'll be starting on the next month's release at the start of the quality week. This is more just a change in how we time things, so that there's time for both manual and automated testing to validate the release.

Shiny, shiny

All the same, this was an action packed month and we probably delivered more exciting, user-visible change than any previous month. The crown jewel is that we landed the first of the beautiful UI design work that James Raymond has been doing:

This month was all about Dmedia, and we made great progress there, including getting video playback working inside our HTML5 UI, all thanks to GStreamer.

But next month is going to be all about Novacut, and we seem on track to land the first take of our cutting workflow. If you're interested in what's in store, considere attending our next weekly IRC meeting, which will resume on Sunday, January 8.

Special thanks

Get the bits

Packages are available in the Novacut Stable Releases PPA for Ubuntu Oneiric and Precise. And you can download the source code from each component's Launchpad project page. Whoa, seven components and counting:

Contribute to 12.01 and beyond!

We always release on the last Thursday of the month. The 12.01 components will be released on Thursday January 26, 2012, and development is already underway. To see what's in store for the next releases, checkout the 12.01 milestones:

That's all, folks!

Thanks to everyone who is helping make this dream a reality!

Jason Gerard DeRose

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Why Novacut Makes Me Feel Like a Superhero

As a kid, I was drawn to biographies about social activists.  I especially loved reading the personal accounts of people who witnessed the visionary bravery of Martin Luther King, Jr., John and Tina Trudell, Caesar Chavez, Mother Jones, Gandhi, etc.  In my eyes, the superheros that I watched on cartoon Saturdays didn't hold a candle to these real-life ACTION heroes, for they actually changed the world.  They played a pivotal role in making the world kinder and gentler. 

At the age of ten, I couldn't tell you why I was compelled to read stories about a small woman with a big voice getting arrested for inciting a workers riot.  I could tell you definitively that it wasn't about the raw, frenetic energy that defines any major strike, but I couldn't pin-point my interest either.  Now, however, with a bit more life experience under my belt, I know where my fascination came from.  I was electrified by the ability of these ACTION greats to help people see that they weren't pawns in some power broker's game - that they were the ones with the real and lasting power.  They had the power because their collective labor is what made industry, towns, cities, and nations work.  My heroes clearly saw this reality, named it, organized people around it, and made a stage for it to be witnessed by others.

Marianna Rafaele: The great Ubuntu Developer Summit organizer and hero of mine

So what does all of this have to do with Novacut?  Well, here I go climbing onto a very shaky limb...I believe, with complete and total faith, that Novacut will be a stage for the collective power of artists (from Bangladesh to Los Angeles) to shine.  HDSLR cameras, nonlinear editing, and the internet have redistributed power in the entertainment industry.  These technologies have shown us that story tellers are of much greater value than all of the big Hollywood producers combined.  Novacut's distribution platform will simply be a centralized hub - a stage - on which the story teller's value will not only be witnessed but also allowed to be appreciated in a very direct way by his or her fans.

Playing a small part in the building of Novacut's distribution platform, I sometimes notice a superhero quality welling in my chest - a feeling of being a part of something with the potential to show people with a story to tell just how powerful they really are.