Sunday, September 16, 2007

GIMP UI brainstorm

I can state with a fair degree of certainty that the vast majority of us who actually use higher-level image processing applications such as Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro (or whatever Corel is calling it now) and the like use only a very small sub-set of the features available. I know I do and the same goes for nearly every user I know. Not all, but the largest part. And finding those features in the application and using them well enough to do what we need done is confusing and time consuming. It just goes with the territory.

The GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) is like that for me. I use it daily. Now, there is a program on to allow both users and developers to "brainstorm" new interfaces. You can find it at the link above.

I welcome this. Perhaps The GIMP does not really need a new interface so much as one that allows more casual users like me to access the few features we use more easily and/or directly; perhaps with customizeable menus or something like that. People who actually make that software work for it's keep probably need something like the current interface. I don't know about their needs. I only know about mine.

In the OCLUG newsgroup on our servers (, see the show site for more information) I recently asked if there were a simpler image manipulation program available for Linux for just this reason. None was suggested and I have not found one yet. However; this does not just affect Linux or Unix users, as there is an excellent port of The GIMP to Windows, as well and Windows users can now have all that GNU goodness too! :) Windows does have simpler applications for the purpose: Witness IrfanView and others. But Linux still lacks one. A new interface for The GIMP might just turn that trick for those of us who need it.

You might want to watch this one develop at the link given above and perhaps even put your efforts into the project. I'm watching it closely now and am thinking about whether or not I have any ideas worth submitting.


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