10 Best Open-source Self-hosted Collaborative Text Editors Alternative to Google Docs
Collaborative writing is a term referred to team and group of writers involving in writing and editing the same document or writing project.
The project can be an essay, a technical documentation, a book or a research paper.
When groups and teams members join together in a writing project, They often face the challenge of choosing a tool.
Are you a researcher, book writer or a novelist? Maybe you are a technical writer or a software developer who works with a team. It's essential for you and your team to choose the right tool for the job. So according to your use-case what's your best option? That's what we are trying to answer in this article.
Who needs collective writing?
Software engineers and developers
Many prefer to choose a free cloud service like Google Docs, Microsoft cloud office or Zoho. However, some may require to have their project managed by a self-hosted solution and free to make sure they are in control as they own their data.
So here in this article, we will offer the best open-source alternatives that can be used to offer a unique collaborative writing experience.
Self-hosted collaborative text editors
We have picked Etherpad first not just because its powerful text editing capabilities but also its powerful communication tools which ease the teamwork.
Etherpad has a rich commenting system with parent-child reply options. It also offers a video conferencing option for the team members editing the same document.
In addition to previously mentioned features, Etherpad comes with import/ export functionalities, modular system with an ecosystem with 250+ plugins and over all it's easy to install and use.
We have covered all Etherpad features in this article.
Hackpad is a real-time web-based Etherpad wiki engine. So basically you have an Etherpad version on fire with more collaborative tool.
Thu, the project is not in active development for 3 years. But it has a solid community behind it.
CyrptoPad is a decentralized open-source cloud collaborative document management system. It offers set of tools for teams starting from rich text, code and sheet editing to presentation management, polls, whiteboard manager, and kanban boards.
It's the only ultimate alternative for Google doc, sheet and presentation apps mentioned in this article.
Furthermore, CryptoPad is secure as it's built to maintain user's privacy. It's private but not anonymous.
CryptoPad is based on ChainPad real-time engine which is a real0time collaborative editor algorithm based on Nakamoto Blockchains.
Wiki Engines are a collaborative writing platform by default. However, we would not pick any Wiki for you. We choose Wiki.js simply because it's a lightweight solution with rich-features set for the enterprise and professional teams.
Wiki.js is an easy-to-install modular system with multiple editors options as it support markdown, WYSIWYG, HTML editor, and LaTeX.
It offers a rich collaborative experience with solid versioning control system, a user management with access control and page rules.
CodiMD (HedgeDoc) CodiMD is a self-hosted real-time collaborative markdown editor. It features dual-pane markdown editor, image uploads, table, checklist, commenting, revision control, slide mode support and multiple export formats.
CodiMD offers an import/ export option from Gist.
The project is completely free and open-source and licensed under AGPLv3.0.
Cattaz Cattaz is an open-source collaborative web-based markdown editor that is built to increase team productivity as it comes with built-in Kanban feature with task manager.
It has different use-cases as it can be used in workshops, events, agile development and telework sessions.
Cattaz can be used to develop real-time writing/ editing projects.
Undoubtedly, Collaborative text writing editors come in all shapes and sizes with variety of options and features. However, hence we collected the most powerful open-source ones. It's advised to check the requirement before choosing the tool.
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