Best GitHub Projects in 2023
This is a personal list of what I believe are the best GitHub Projects in 2023. These are the apps that benefit me the most, I am not speaking for everyone here. If you have other contenders you believe to be worthy, leave a comment at the bottom of this post for others to see :)
Now, I’m no developer but I do dabble in writing some code from time to time. When I do it is often on the basic end of the scale and I rarely need any version control which is GitHubs primary role. Where I do use GitHub though is as my personal treasure chest of nifty little tools that help me get through the day.
This is all possible because millions of other, better, faster and more intelligent developers than myself go ahead and create amazing tools which they host on GitHub for free. All we have to do is find them and download them. Below is a compiled list of what I believe are The Best GitHub Projects in 2023. As always you can use the numbered list below to jump straight to that section of the post.
HandBrake is an open-source tool for converting video from nearly any format to a selection of modern, widely supported codecs. HandBrake has a long list of use cases, some of which are listed below but I use it to optimize my videos for the web and to convert videos that I can’t play on my laptop into videos that I can play on my laptop.
Convert nearly any video type to something playable
Crop and resize video
Restore low-quality video
Downmix surround sound to stereo
Adjust audio volume levels
Add or remove soft subtitles (subtitles stored as text)
IINA is a recent find for me and so far I love it. For a long time, VLC was my day-to-day media player, that was until I got an M1 MBP at which point I noticed that VLC couldn’t handle my HDR content. Quicktime could play HDR but it was also limited in the number of formats it could play and I didn’t want two video players installed on my machine. IINA is written in Swift and is designed for Mac, it’s got a rich feature set, minimal UI and can play pretty much anything I throw at it, including my HDR footage
If you follow my blog then you have seen this in action at some point. KeyCastr enables you to display your keystrokes when creating screencasts, presenting, or collaborating with others. You can choose to display all keystrokes or command keys only and there is also an option to include mouse clicks.
I dedicated an entire post to Microsoft PowerToys which I suggest you check out if you haven't already - PowerToys - 11 Awesome Features Microsoft Won’t Add To Windows. In brief, PowerToys is a set of utilities for Windows including a great window management tool, a colour picker and an image resizer to name just a few.
If you connect your mac up to an external display you may find that you are unable to adjust the volume or brightness of that display. Extremely frustrating if you have your speakers connected to your monitor!
This is all because Apple computers don't support CEC (Consumer Electronics Control). Which enables devices to communicate over HDMI cable to the end device. I really don’t know why as every Windows laptop I have ever owned does this out of the box. Alas, GitHub comes to our rescue again with MonitorControl.
OBS Studio is free and open-source video recording and live streaming software. This is a well-known application and is the go-to for anyone wanting to stream content on the web. It is also just a fantastic tool for creating screen captures. I often use the built-in screen capture tool for quick snaps but if I am looking to create longer content I will fire up OBS as the functionality is great.
Optimus is a desktop image optimisation application. It supports conversion and compression between WebP, JPEG, and PNG image formats. Again, when working with my website I want to reduce file sizes as much as possible and a good way to do that is to convert my images into the WebP format. Optimus allows me to batch-convert a set of photos and define conversion quality.
If you’re enjoying this list why not check out my list of favourite utilities…
If you are a fan of the Pomodoro technique when working I suggest you take a look at this utility. I have tried quite a few "pomo" timers in my time, but none of them hit the right spot. Some are bloated and do too many things and others only work as an extension for a browser.
Pomotroid is a beautiful-looking, simple, and stand-alone application with the right level of customisation. You can adjust the time of sessions, breaks and how many rounds you want in your per session. It's great, download it!
Quick Look Extensions
Quick Look on mac is undoubtedly awesome. It can save you so much time being able to preview without having to open it. Wouldn't it be better though if it could preview more files? Well, until recently I didn’t know that you could get extensions for Quick Look which do just that.
Syntax Highlighting & QLMarkdown - The first enables you to preview code files with the correct syntax highlighting, rather than plain text. The second enables you to preview markdown files as they should be rather than in plain text.
Windows Users: You can get a similar experience with an app called QuickLook from the Microsoft Store. It’s nowhere near as powerful but it is better than nothing.
ShareX is a powerhouse when it comes to screenshots. It is incredibly feature-rich which can make it a little daunting at first but once you have it set up correctly it is incredibly powerful. It also has some other built-in tools like OCR for copying text and a QR code generator and decoder.
A command line/terminal tool here so get your nerd hats on. yt-dlp is a youtube-dl fork based on the now inactive youtube-dlc. Now that probably doesn't mean much but this is a command-line video download tool which enables you to download video content from pretty much anywhere on the web, including Youtube.
It can look scary and I am sure it can do a lot more than I use it for, but once installed you simply open a terminal/command line window and enter “yt-dlp” followed by the URL of the video or page that contains the video.
There we have it - my Best GitHub Project in 2023.
There are some absolutely amazing applications in that list and I take my hat off to everyone who was involved with them. It is amazing what a group of dedicated people can achieve.
If you have any suggestions for GitHub-hosted applications please leave a comment down below. As always please do like and share if you feel the content was worth it and if it takes your fancy why not consider subscribing? That way you will never miss a post :)