Akademy 2019

13 September, 2019

I attended my first ever Akademy!

Akademy is the annual world summit of KDE, one of the largest Free Software communities in the world. It is a free, non-commercial event organized by the KDE Community

The event was held at the University of Milano-Bicocca in Milan, Italy this year. And the experience was splendid. During the 2 day conference, I had the opportunity to talk at the Student Showcase, where all of the SoC students presented their work to the community. There were about 8 students, and everyone gave a good briefing on their project.

me speaking

My project this summer was with Kdenlive, the open source non linear professional video editor. I proposed to revamp one of the frequently used tools in the editor, called the Titler tool, which is used to create title clips. Title clips are video clips that contain text and/or images that are composited or appended to your video (eg: subtitles). The problem with the titler tool as it is, is that it uses QGraphicsView to describe a title clip and QGraphicsView was deprecated since the release of Qt5. This obviously leads to problems - upstream bugs crawling affecting the functionality of the tool and an overall degradation in the ease of maintenance of the codebase. Moreover, adding new features to the existing code base was no easy task and therefore, a complete revamp was something in sights of the developer community in Kdenlive for a long time now. I proposed to rework on the backend for the period of GSoC replacing the use of XML with QML and use a new rendering backend with QQuickRenderControl, along with a new MLT module to handle the QML frames. I was able to cover most of the proposed work, I seek to continue working on it and finish evolving the titler tool.

The folks from Kdenlive have always been very warm and helpful especially with the whole learning curve (which definitely was steep) and working with the community so far has been great, I’ve learned a lot from the experienced developers in Kdenlive and from the Kdenlive community. I seek to continue working with the Kdenlive team and KDE to continue making Kdenlive a great tool to use and a great community to be a part of.

All in all, Akademy was an unforgettable experience, I met a lot of brilliant people from the KDE community in person and the other SoC students from other parts of the world. I’m extremely thankful to the KDE community for presenting us, students, with such a fine opportunity and a platform to work and talk on our projects. Kudos to the Akademy Team for orchestrating such an event!

Here's my GSoC Work Report: https://community.kde.org/GSoC/2019/StatusReports/AkhilKGangadharan

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