Is VLC for OS X in Danger?

VLC for OS X could go MIA PDQ unless some Mac developers step up ASAP. That's because VLC media player, the (for-now) cross-platform software from the VideoLAN project, reportedly now has a whopping total of zero Mac developers, according to MacNN. But it's not time to worry just yet.

The VLC download page now includes a message stating that the VideoLAN project is "looking for more for developers for the Mac OS X port," stressing experience in C, Cocoa, and Xcode. Until more Mac developers join the project, the 64-bit version of VLC for Mac has been suspended indefinitely. But VLC's developers posted a note when this story first broke Wednesday, stating that Mac VLC isn't going to die, just that it's suffering from a "lack of manpower on the current Mac interface." The developers also add, somewhat cryptically, that "Apple doesn't want us on the Mac platform and is blocking us a lot, and refuses to explain why."

Apparently, though, a new, more Mac-like interface is on tap for VLC, and the developers hope to have a beta version available next month.

VLC's key claim to fame is that the software can play just about any video file you encounter; when QuickTime Player can't, VLC generally can. Of course, QuickTime does support external codecs, and the vast majority of video files you encounter today work well enough with Apple's built-in software. But if you don't love Apple's player, or if you encounter files that QuickTIme can't handle, VLC's absence could be pretty rough.

If you need a 64-bit version of VLC--to use with the 64-bit version of HandBrake, for example--you can still download VLC 1.0.2 or the latest (and perhaps unstable) nightly build of 1.0.3. Luckily, it looks like the player will stick around, even if 64-bit development is currently gasping for air.

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