Published: Tuesday, May 19, 2015 Last modified: Monday, Apr 8, 2024

I have used Adobe Premiere, iMovie, Final Cut Pro X and a myriad of other video editors.

I think it’s possible to create a simple localhost video editor, using opensource software, for telling a story. I think there are projects like html5-videoEditor, but I do not like the dependencies like MongoDB.

Basic Requirements

I don’t need a ton of other features for my basic video editing flow. Besides many features such as colour grading & stabilisation are being offered by “the cloud” aka Youtube nowadays.

Trimming and concatenating the video

Like my earlier video experiment;, what I imagine happening is listing your videos by source locations, for example:

Here you would mark intersections of the video you want to keep. Hopefully the video player can be programmed to not playback these sections as if they has been cut away. So you could basically make a jump cut quickly.

Now all these edits could be described in a simple JSON file like so:

[ "filename": "gopro/104GOPRO/GOPR1685.MP4", edits: [ "00:00:03-00:00:08", "00:00:10-00:00:22" ],
[ "filename": "iphone6/105APPLE/IMG_5592.mp4", edits: [ "00:00:01-00:00:07", "00:01:00-00:01:42" ],

Two filenames for example above have both been edited/cut/trimmed down to two clips.

Now that simply data structure can hopefully be fed into ffmpeg where it would make the edits and then concatenate to a final.mp4 consisting of the 4 clips concatenated in time order.

What about sound?

Audacity can import MP4 and you can edit sound. You can accomplish complex tasks like replacing the audio with say a better copy recorded with a non-camera microphone. The big issue with Audacity is that it seems to have issues outputting the edited MP4.

This needs to be crucially fixed.

I imagine MP4s being edited before doing the cuts. And once again after the cuts have been made to final.mp4.

Of course video / audio synchronisation is totally missing, but I think I could live with that to begin with.