50 Open Source Tools That Could Help You Find (or Keep) a Valentine

Open source chocolate, poetry, jewelry and other software downloads for romantics.
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You may not have noticed, but Valentine's Day is just around the corner. Don't panic if you haven't planned the perfect date yet -- the open source community has you covered.

In honor of the season, we've put together a list of open source tools for romantics. If you're looking for the perfect gift, we found open source apps that could help you create your own Valentine's Day card, open source chocolate, open source poetry and even open source jewelry. To help you create the perfect evening, we added a whole host of apps for putting together the perfect soundtrack. Plus: apps to help you practice your dancing, pick the perfect wine (or beer), cook a romantic dinner or watch a romantic movie.

Of course, communication is key to any successful relationship, so we also listed plenty of open source e-mail, IM and blogging apps for staying in touch. And to help you schedule more time with your sweetie, we also included a couple of calendar apps.

If you don't like any of the ideas on our list (we'd be heartbroken), you can always use the open source mind mapper software to brainstorm ideas for a Valentine's Day unlike any other. And finally, if you've given up on finding a Valentine in the real world, you can always try to find a virtual Valentine in an open source online game.

As always, if you know of other open source projects that could help people find (or keep) a Valentine, feel free to add them in the comments section below.

Make Your Own Valentine's Day Card

1. Scribus

A store-bought card is so generic. Instead, create your own Valentine's Day message with Scribus. It offers professional-caliber graphic design capabilities with an amateur-friendly interface. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X

2. Gimp

Surprise your Valentine with the perfect photo of the two of you, or add a photo to a card you make yourself. The Gimp lets you crop and edit photos with a wide range of features suitable for amateur or professional designers and photographers. Operating System: Windows, Linux

3. Inkscape

Inkscape allows you to create your own vector graphics or edit existing ones. The site includes a gallery with plenty of free Valentine's day clip art. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X


If your significant other is particularly geeky, you might use Dia to create a flowchart demonstrating how your love has grown. (Use this technique with extreme caution.) Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X


5. Chocolate Invader

The folks at this website aren't offering an application—they're selling chocolate molded in the shape of a space invader, they plan to "open source" their design and recipe. They already offer quite a bit of information about their production process online, so you can try your own hand at creating a Chocolate Invader if you don't want to order their "best tasting chocolate in the universe." Operating System: N/A


6. Open Source Poetry

This website offers tools to help you write your own poem or to collaborate with other poets on an open source creation. You can save your lines for your own reference or for others to use in creating new works. Operating System: OS Independent


7. iNecklace

This necklace for Mac fans slowly pulses with light. You can buy it premade or download the open source schematics from GitHub to make it yourself. Operating System: N/A


8. Amarok

Similar to iTunes, Amarok is a music organizer and player that integrates with a number of Web services so you can find new music. Get ready for Valentine's day by setting up your own playlist—Amarok's dynamic playlist feature makes it easy to play a selection of songs related to a broad category. For example, you could create a playlist of songs that were popular when you first met. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X

9. Aqualung

Don't spoil the romantic mood with an awkward pause in between songs. This audio player offers gap-free playback between adjacent tracks, and it plays a wide variety of file formats. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X

10. aTunes

Another iTunes competitor, this Java-based music organizer and player offers a simple interface, Internet radio playback, easy playlist creation, tags and contextual information. It also offers a karaoke playback option in case you want to sing along. Operating System: OS Independent

11. Audacity

Sometimes someone else's song just doesn't do justice to your feelings, and you need to write your own. If that's your case, Audacity offers the recording and editing tools you need to create your own musical masterpiece. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X

12. Jajuk

This critically acclaimed audio player has been called "a powerful iTunes replacement" and "the most powerful jukebox out there." It includes a number of tools that can help you set the right mood for Valentine's Day, including a digital DJ rules-based playlist, ambiance management, prepare party, best of, smart shuffle and other features. Operating System: OS Independent

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Tags: open source software, open source apps, open source downloads

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