About KiCad

KiCad is an open source software suite for Electronic Design Automation (EDA). The programs handle Schematic Capture, and PCB Layout with Gerber output. The suite runs on Windows, Linux and macOS and is licensed under GNU GPL v3.


KiCad was first released in 1992 by its original author, Jean-Pierre Charras. It has been in continual development since then and is now managed by the KiCad Development Team.

The name of KiCad comes from the first letters of a company of Jean-Pierre Charras' friend "Ki" being combined with "Cad". But it now has no meaning other than being the name of the software suite. Mentioned by Jean-Pierre in an email.

More KiCad history, general information, and advancements can be found in Wayne’s 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 FOSDEM presentations.

Lead Developers

Jean-Pierre Charras

Jon Evans

Seth Hillbrand

Ian McInerney

Thomas Pointhuber

Mark Roszko

Wayne Stambaugh (Project Leader)

Tomasz Wlostowski

Jeff Young

Developers Emeriti

John Beard

Dick Hollenbeck

Alexis Lockwood

Brian Sidebotham

Orson (Maciej Sumiński)