Google’s video portal Youtube today presented its new online video editing feature, which allows Youtubers to create mash-ups of existing videos and edit video in the cloud. Soundtracks can be added from Youtube’s AudioSwap library, however the songs will replace the original audio track.
Users and makers of expensive, high-class video editing software such as Avid and FinalCut may laugh at the basic functionality of Youtube’s video editor, however more and more regular, desktop-based software is heading towards the cloud.
Just like video editing and movie making, the realm of Digital Audio Workstations (DAWS) has been an exclusive one in the last 20+ years, limited to people buying a sequencer and creating and recording music at home. Technological advancements such as USB 2.0, Firewire, DSPs and laptops made it increasingly easier to record music in a practice room or at home. High-quality audio interfaces could be bought on a budget, alongside software and sample packs containing additional instruments.
This gave users far more possibilities to create music than back in the ancient days when productivity was limited to a rather expensive four-track cassette multitracker and an expensive analogue synthesizer.
Nowadays, browser-based audio editing is becoming increasingly popular. Aviary has launched its “Music Creator” audio recording and editing application, after it bought Digimix, the original developer. Track and Fields allows people from around the globe to record songs together using a browser application, adding social networking to music production. The company has also launched online remix competitions with bands such as Ash and the seminal Krautrockers Neu!.
Youtube’s online video editor is an innovation in its field, however it is following a general trend. In ten years time, it might be commonplace to use a mobile device running Chrome OS to record one’s guitar strumming or create a video, upload it to the cloud and use it to create content with friends online. What once required a RAID-array, expensive external hardware and software is heading onto servers.