I have to run to work, so I just donated $20.
In reality, if everyone in this thread tried to contribute to gimp for an hour, I expect we'd get two patches of any value out of it, and about 100 hours of time that did nothing but negatively impacted existing gimp developers.
There are two realistic outcomes from a "1 hour to contribute something" thing:
1. A trivial patch which causes more lost time ($) for the existing gimp developers than it creates value
2. A developer jumping into irc and trying to ramp up, which for about the first 6 hours of time will likely be a drain on the existing developers with no positive value return until at least 15 work-hours of the developer ramping up (and that's assuming a developer who is already quite experienced and can ramp up pretty efficiently. For some developers, the numbers would be vastly worse).
I would go so far as to argue that part of gimp's less intuitive UI is because of having more developers, and if there were fewer developers total the UI would be more cohesive.
If $20 sounds too low, feel free to pitch in more. I'm a physics postdoc, not a software dev.
I'm not going to link to anything here because that implies vetting and I'm not going to vet anything. This isn't at all hard to find.
(I don't necessarily object to snarkiness. And obviously, tone can be hard to judge in plain text.)
I did the search, found lots of stuff readily available, shared my exact search phrase so it could be replicated and explained my reasoning for sharing the search phrase instead of a link. And now two people are busting my chops for actually being helpful.
I bet no one would have said a damn thing had I simply not bothered to reply and, in this case, not bothering to reply would have been the jerk thing to do because it would have been unhelpful to someone actually sincerely needing help and it would have been done on a bad faith assumption.
To you which may mean that it is merely possible to infer snarkiness.
> If you don't care, that's fine.
Haha that doesn't help.
If you're doing a contract not for profits pay the same as everyone else.
In my reality no developer (even a sh*y one) makes $20k.
Granted, it's not my only source of income, but what is the average pay/hour for most devs?
If you live in SV it might be like $210k or something absurd.
If you ask people to give $50, fewer people will than if you ask them $20 so overall they will get more money.
So the broad decisions about what will be done and in what way have already been made at the team- and individual-psychology level, assuming this money doesn't radically change the core team composition. While the objective manifestation of the spending is yet to come, this money was already spent by the team psychology, and the further we depart from GIMP's past in wishing for changes, the less likely our wishes will match with the actual outcome of the expenditures.
And let's take the polar opposite into consideration--even if the idea of becoming more like Blender and gathering people and putting a big project together makes the GIMP team members recoil in horror, the most well-founded hope would be that the GIMP team builds on past successes and learns from past failures, or gains more momentum in the direction that will likely bring it the most success _given the team's psychological makeup & personal resources_. That would probably bring about a really good outcome even if it doesn't result in a highly-visible project.
> gimp developers work on gimp because they like gimp
I'd say: GIMP has always been good enough for GIMP developers as its own world to explore--what is it, what can we make it become for the sake of GIMP. I remember the good old days (frankly I'm not sure if this still happens) when a mailing list suggestion like "look, Photoshop does X and GIMP sucks at X" would almost always result in a "hey, the source is open" comment from core devs. This drove some users absolutely crazy, because _if it was their project_, one of the core goals would be fitting the project to user expectations (probably rooted in Photoshop use-experiences) rather than setting a sort of psychological boundary around GIMP that is less permeable to that kind of encouragement to change for the sake of some externality like "a frustrated Photoshop pro" or "a mom who never knows where her toolbars go". There generally hasn't been a pressured response to that kind of pressure from the GIMP team except in slower, measured ways. This tells us that GIMP developers feel less pressure from that feedback (positive pressure or negative) than other developers on other projects might.
This kind of internally-protective outcome reminds me of a bumper sticker that I saw that said "Keep Portland Weird." I think there's a benefit to that line of thought. Maybe "Keep GIMP GIMP--while also working on meeting Photoshop-level expectations _whenever we feel like it_" is more representative. And this is completely separate from looking at GIMP as a low-quality project, or even a weird project. It's an awesome project _in its own way_ is what I'm saying. To understand it and its unique leverage points is to enjoy using GIMP.
> while blender developers work on blender to see what people can do with it
First, I don't know about individual developers, as this is more of a comment of "type and generality". But I think the project outcomes make it clear that Blender developers really enjoy the feeling of making a big impact in the world, and building bridges to the outside-of-Blender world, as opposed to more internal focus on bringing a special, unique thing into existence. (Every project will have a blend of both, but this is speaking in terms of project-type, where it helps to cast a project into one bucket or another in order to get at what makes them different.)
The former, a focus on the outside impact, results in something with which it's easy to objectively identify and praise, because it's more objectively "compatible" with more people and teams. A Maya team goes "we get this" partially because it works with them on a level. It crosses the objective barrier and works with people who prefer another set of keyboard shortcuts and window layouts. And so the Blender team gets more of that outside-in encouragement from a broader base, IMO.
And again, this doesn't make GIMP faulty, just different. The latter type of focus, the internal focus, asks "what do _we_ want to do, what interests _us_ as a team, what's next for _us_" and I believe that's always been a feature of GIMP's existence. When you understand GIMP you can talk to core developers. When you begin to push on it, and compare it to Photoshop, you become the problem much faster than you would in other communities, because you're not focused on what GIMP is. So the GIMP project might have this objective-world blind spot, as evidenced by a HN thread full of change requests :-) but it's a trade-off for a high level of internal, subjective quality which can be observed if you _look at GIMP for what it is_ and really figure it out. I mean, I use the software every day, and there are so many little things that make me miss it when I have to use something like PS.
> so they will not be able to spend this money effectively
Quite the opposite--I'm certain it will be spent effectively. No doubt about that at all.
What I'm saying is that it would probably not be realistic to hope that it is spent the exact same way that a Blender fan would really appreciate. And that's OK and even a good thing.
Right now, the focus is on completing the GTK+3 port for v3.0 and making room in API for upcoming serious changes in v3.2 such as non-destructive editing. Sounds good enough? :)
A naive implementation might just have two buffers and a list of pixel changesets and no knowledge of how the changes were made. A more advanced implementation could track more information, work on a per layer basis, and support the recovery of vector text layers from rastered ones.
So I guess the answer is not by default, but it opens the door for it to be a thing.
I myself make monthly donations to Øyvind Kolås, and I think it's important he just does what he thinks he needs to do. No "make Gimp like software X" stuff.
Thats what GIMP needs. After 9 years of using GIMP I switched to photoshop because I was doing many photos and couldnt hand the inconsistency of what each button does.
Many users don't know where or how or what to put in a bug report.
If some had a site that you could just write free-form prose others more experienced could convert that to actionable bug reports.
That said, I'll _happily_ take any mention of FOSS bugs, verify, and file them at the proper place. Hit me!
We would greatly benefit from a good artistic/photo image editing tool that does not belong to the Adobe's subscription license racket. Unfortunately, Gimp is not nearly in the same class as Photoshop, so most artists grumble about Adobe but still pay subscription because its UI is SO much better. Photoshop is the main reason I still run Windows at home; I would gladly donate this money to Gimp instead if it provides the same functionality: good slider and visual coordination to find the right levels and color balances, good color support (no, 8-bit color is not enough), decent printing (at least to 17"x40") and raw camera images.
Pull pictures off camera manually into a date-named folder
Open lightroom, click "new catalog"
Put catalog into named date folder
Import those photos (import without move option)
Work on those photos, use the slider catalog thing at the bottom to filter by flagged (the ones I edited and like), then ctrl+a and export.
My impression is that Lightroom is really designed for you to go "all in" and let it organize everything.
Phase One's Capture One solves this by using "sessions" instead, which lets you keep any sort of workspace as a loose individual folder; with preset subfolders for raw files, output, trash, previews, etc. You still get the benefits of tagging and other bells and whistles of searchable libraries but with much easier grouping and portability.
While this really doesn't apply to casual editing, I think the performance benefits and flexibility of the session approach over LR's insistence on libraries cannot be overstated if your RAW files start to number in the thousands after a few months (event/wedding photographers, etc.).
It would help if you specify what you mean by library management. What it doesn't do, and is very clear, is handle things like renaming files. You are expected to have copied the files over to your hard drive and organized them into folders (in any way that you like).
Beyond that, it serves library management well enough. You import a folder, and it becomes a collection. You can tag it, do queries, etc. It works very well for me when I want to find all photos of, say, my cat - even though they are spread across many directories.
Why would you have to spend months to figure that out
Right. And then as I'm working on a project, and decide that collection needs to be two sub-collections, these three shots should actually be in this other project, these two shots maybe should be part of both this project and that project, these three portraits might fit the mood of that collection I'started putting together a few months ago... what do I do then? I'm fine with having to pick a folder to store my files in, that's a simple data storage problem. Library management is about semantic data, and in case you haven't noticed every file browser is absolutely garbage at that. Tags, especially the tiny little PITA tag browser box that was so clearly an afterthought in darktable, are an inadequate solution.
(I spent months trying to figure out what I was missing because I heard darktable repeatedly pitched as an equivalent to Lightroom, such as in the comment I replied to here, so I figured an answer to these fundamental workflows needs must be hidden in there somewhere and I was just committing the cardinal sin of Not Reading The Docs. When I finally did pore through the docs and find nothing more than tagging is when I jumped on the mail lists and discovered the devs are actually not interested in building an Lightroom equivalent.)
Also, Photoshop is just as buggy as (if not more than) Krita she finds. People just live with it because they don't have a choice.
I understand that open source means you can do whatever you want yourself, but both conversations started when they heard I got photoshop and said "no no no, do not waste your money, let us show you how gimp is the better tool".
From the announcment:
> [...] and will use the money to do much overdue hardware
> upgrade for the core team members and organize the next
> hackfest to bring the team together, as well as sponsor the
> next instance of Libre Graphics Meeting.
To me (and I am just an occasional hobbyist), it is mostly the UI: the interface, flow and visual appearance is just right. As a simple example, moving levels slider ( https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/using/levels-adjustment.ht... ) with mouse and having a single-click option to see clipped areas is a killer feature. You can see it in other ways, but having this on/off before/after without moving a mouse is super powerful. Someone mentioned adjustment levels (and masks) that, to me, are done just right.
Gimp is the right tool for thinking about images in numbers: average the area, find maximum channel intensity, stretch to full range. But it is lacking for folks who want to drag sliders around and see the changes to find out what looks good.
I've gotten quite a bit of use out of Affinity Designer. There's a few features I've wished for but I can't justify paying for Illustrator and so have made do and been pretty satisfied.
But, ... recently I started doing some game development again and the workflows in Affinity Photo just didn't work for me. I found myself very frustrated because of poor or un-thoughtout design issues. So I caved and paid for the Photography Photoshop/Lightroom subscription ($120/yr). That's probably 1-4 hours of salary to buy depending on your job but it totally paid for itself in having a much better workflow so I could actually get stuff done.
$120 a year is about 4x what I paid before Adobe went subscription (used to upgrade every other version which was about once every 4 years) so in that sense it sounds expensive but, compared to what I get paid or what I charge it's a tiny amount of money and AFAICT totally worth it, at least for me.
The one area where I'd say it needs improvement is the raw development. The output just isn't that great compared to Adobe Camera Raw or (my tool of choice) Capture One.
For example, currently, many Filters don't have previews (Or the preview window is too small), which make apply them become a slow try and error game.
Also, the Text in the picture can be hard to select, as sometime you mistakenly select the underlying layer instead of the text.
Also again, Filters cannot be directly applied to editable text. Sure, GIMP will convert the rasterized text back to editable text, but doing so will discard all the applied Filters.
"An enhancement request should never be filed without prior discussion on the gimp-developer mailing list. This is to make sure that the enhancement requests that are filed are well-specified and aligned with the overall goals the developers have for GIMP."
But please don't let that stop you! The more feedback that the developers get, the better GIMP will be for everyone.
Been waiting for this for years.
On every new Gimp release I look through the new features and ... no. No adjustment layers.
I'm confused how this is not the #1 priority. It has been what I am missing for years and years. And every time I talk to someone about Gimp vs Photoshop, they ask me 'Do you still have to cope with destructive adjustment curves and filters etc? OMG, that is archaic!'.
It's pretty high on the list. Most of the major work in the last decade is to rearchitect the code base to use GEGL. GEGL is a prerequisite to adjustment layers in Gimp.
Progress is very slow, but it is moving along.
While the roadmap has been stating for years that it's planned for v3.2 :)
> I'm confused how this is not the #1 priority.
Before 2.10 the top priority was completing the switch to the new image processing backend that makes non-destructive editing possible.
For 3.0 the top priority is switching to a newer, actually maintained version of the UI toolkit.
For 3.2 the top priority is, at last, the non-destructive editing.
It all makes sense.
It's a newer open source photo editor (though not pixel editor) that allows you to compose your own non-destructive processing pipeline from individual operations.
While I'm not someone who needs image editing professionally or who makes amazing things with it, I did take my time to learn GIMP properly for my use-cases, and the things I find lacking do not include "non-destructive adjustment layers".
The gist of it is that all your filters, color corrections are just additional layers, w/o manipulating the image in the layer under them. It lets you very quickly toggle between different settings, revise settings, and even very easily only filter parts of an image. (ie, you can have a unfiltered layer above a stack of filters, and the original image)
Mind you, I haven't used Photoshop in years and GIMP (or Krita) has proven well enough for the image work I need to do. This is just one thing that stuck with me from 15 years ago!
I wonder if these same people also bitch about learning new languages or frameworks when technology moves on.
Professionals will always go with a well-marketed and popular option and they don't care about paying 500-1000$ for an image editing program. They don't care (or know) about open source. But I expect better from HN crowd.
As for GIMP and its features, well, when Photoshop firdt mentioned about the new Content Aware feature, there was a collective orgasm, but GIMP had that feature (by sheer virtue of the scriptability and flexibility which is inherent in its design) in a script format at least a year or two before that.
I don't expect GIMP to win hearts of professionals and their shiny macbooks, but for a casual heavy job, GIMP is more than capable, and expect programmers to appreciate it for what the GIMP project has achieved. But all we get here is "but but Photoshop!"
GIMP's UI is alright for me, what I need are more features that are sorely lacking:
1) ability to work with images having an arbitrary number of spectral bands
2) floating-point pixel values
3) complex-valued pixels and their natural operations
4) images of arbitrary size, without need to open the whole image at once (which may not actually fit in memory)
5) save the processing graph and apply it to other images with a command line tool
Where do I start?
- sometimes when I start it it doesn't display toolbox
- when I open the toolbox it is (sometimes) a vertical line of buttons (single column) instead of 5 columns that I begged it countless times to be
- setting the size of pencil is completely unintuitive - I usually click in what appears to be input field, only to discover it is not (but instead some meter that sets size to some huge number)
- saving the set size is something that should be done automatically, but I haven't found a convenient way to do it
Note that I love Gimp and use it often, but UX is not its strong point.
It actually is an input field, but it can be interacted with in 3 ways. Clicking on the value focuses it, and allows editing by keyboard. Clicking and dragging in the bottom half of the block allows you to increase or decrease the value by dragging left or right, and the movements you make translate to relatively smaller value changes, so you can be relatively precise. Clicking and dragging in the top half of the block allows you to select a specific value by dragging, and the position of the cursor translates directly to the position of that value on the bar.
Actually, in Gimp 2.10.4 it now for me even changes the shape of the cursor: lower half: ↔ (left-right arrows) upper half: ↑ (up-arrow) so it seems they fixed the discoverability :)
Agreed. It's hard to imagine a scenario when you open a file in GIMP and don't want the tools. While there may be some such scenarios, it's hard to believe that it's a common case.
> when I open the toolbox it is (sometimes) a vertical line of buttons (single column) instead of 5 columns that I begged it countless times to be
Oh, yeah. Having the toolbox form factor changing and the tool buttons moving around (seemingly at random) is by far the most annoying part of GIMP for me. I don't actually much care what layout is chosen; I just want it to stay the same.
please no :(
Floating point pixel values should be supported as of GIMP 2.10, though.
True! I have just updated to 2.10 and it can open floating-point tiffs of one or three channels. The support is very limited, though. It seems to ignore negative values or values higher than 1, so it is mostly useless to me. Yet, I'm very happy to see new advances!
1.) handle hyperspectral images
2.) handle images with 32-bit floating-point pixels
3.) handle gigantic images, streaming from disk as necessary
4.) record edits as a macro, which can be replayed on other images
Unfortunately, I'm not aware of, and a little searching didn't uncover, any capability for handling complex pixel values. This could be (poorly) implemented with 2-channel images and some user macros for specially manipulating them.
Googling "complex-valued pixels" didn't bring up anything, but I'm interested in finding out more about that. What pixel-related information do the real/imaginary parts represent? What sort of applications does that have?
If you compute the Fourier transform of a scalar-valued image, you obtain a complex-valued image. It would be nice to be able to process these transforms with gimp (e.g., to "paint" a few parts in black to set those frequencies to zero, thereby defining a band-pass filter).
Their window/toolbox system sucks though. I have a hard time placing all windows where they need to be and even opening some of them. It's probably my biggest complaint right now.
Welcome to 2018 where GIMP 2.10 is available and features the Warp Transform tool that does the same (actually, more) and works directly on the canvas.
GIMP is GNU's image manipulation program, not photo manipulation program. Most images are not photos.
Just use ImageJ!
Everything is counterintutive, starting from shortcuts, to menus, etc. etc., and since it's GTK2 it looks minuscule on hidpi screens.
I don’t know, but I’ll throw out my theory. Note I’m very much a fan of open source even though this might sound negative. I would also love to see GIMPs UI get an overhaul.
In short, I think it’s harder to prioritize open source features for multiple reasons.
When you don’t have paying customers, it’s very hard to prioritize the feedback you get. When you do have paying customers, you tend to prioritize in proportion to the account size, for better or worse. As a blanket general statement that is not always true, but more true than not, paying customers are trying to get something specific done for their job, while free customers are exploring. I say this from the point of view of owning a web startup with a freemium model, so I’ve had a lot of first hand requests from both paying and free customers. I haven’t had an OSS project with as much success, so there might be some different trends when all users are free users.
The other aspect is that developers of OSS projects have fewer deadlines and can choose what they work on. UI coding is usually less fun than writing filters or architecting an image cache. I know that personally, when I’m left to my own devices, I’m not usually working on the hard or boring things that would have the biggest impact for others, I’m working on the fun things that are most fun for me.
There’s also the issue that OSS projects are created by programmers for programming reasons, and they aren’t often able to hire designers and artists like a for-profit shop.
The problem is that the current developer base of many FLOSS project don't understand that a) decent UI requires an expertise and b) knowing how their poor UIs are implemented doesn't count as expertise in UI development.
For example-- if I write to a FLOSS mailing list that the way they are using realloc leaves some stale pointers that can cause crashes, they very quickly fix the problem. But if a UI expert posts something about a similarly severe and easily fixed UI bug, they'll get at least 5 authoritative-sounding responses from people who know absolutely nothing about UI design.
Such a UI developer would definitely need a full-time salary to deal with that kind of social situation.
One additional problem is that it's hard to know who to listen to. Someone who seems like a confident UI expert might as well be a misguided visionary who will turn GIMP into the next Windows 8. Randomly trusting a designer is probably just as dangerous as randomly trusting a software developer.
"Your UI improvement sounds interesting but it's too risky to trust a random UI expert. Sorry."
"I ran the idea by X and they mentioned that accessibility would become a problem with your approach. How do you plan to address that?"
IMO one sounds more likely to attract quality contributions than the other.
For what I need to do Krita is much better. I haven’t used photoshop for over a decade.
Disallowing saving follows the principle of least surprise, because when an application reports a successful save, users would expect the application state they see to actually be saved.
To put it another way, all the data you want "Save" to save isn't actually important to most people who want to use the "Save" button, and if it is they're most certainly aware of which image formats preserve that information.
Having three different ways to save something depending on what you want to preserve is an odd way to do things that I'm bitten by every time I use GIMP.
I should be able to find the command to save my file without needing to know about that lossy distinction.
If there's a potential problem the software can ask me how it should be resolved, when it needs to be resolved.
I can do this with paint.net.
I do this all the time with Corel Painter. Any work in progress gets saved in a way that opens with the layers (corel's format). When I'm done, I can simply collapse the layers and save in a number of formats. No big deal. I understand that some formats simply don't allow the layers. That shouldn't be an issue, though. All it takes is a popup telling the user about this.
Why? I don't understand this. You're not "saving" what you see on the monitor by storing the information to a .png file; the moment you "save" you'll lose some information decided by an algorithm you do not understand, so it really is not "saving" anything, it's "exporting" what you see on the monitor to a different format. When you actually click the "save" button in gimp it stores the content in a format it can recover 100% of the information you'll need tomorrow. These sort of terminological differences between Photoshop, Paint.NET, Gimp, Krita etc... do not point a deficiency in Gimp, rather just a cultural difference decided by rational arguments. I think people should be more thoughtful about what are the targets of Gimp Project, Gimp does not want to be a Photoshop clone, they're trying to make a great image manipulation program; and as software engineers they make their own decisions how to structure/name their program.
When x is standard workflow for many of the other such programs (and things like word processors) and it isn't such in Gimp, that very thing drives people away. Most artists aren't going to care what the software engineers want in the program: Instead, they are going to care about things like this. When added up, it just makes for a frustrating experience. It doesn't really matter what the technicalities are if you are the artist.
Yes, you do lose some information depending on the format. Heck, I notice loss simply looking at an image on different screens. The fact is, though, that folks actually need to save in different formats. Sure, I keep my layers and information in tact while working, but folks also need to be able to share their work, print it, and things like that. For that sort of thing, you need the different formats. The exact format depends on what one is doing: PNG works for facebook and instagram. Some sites have file size limits, and with some printing you have a bit more leeway.
I'm not even a photoshop fan myself: I chose my software based on both if it was easily integrated with a Wacom pen display and how well it mimicked traditional artwork flow and styles. Hence my use of Corel. Photoshop is basically a renting program now, and I generally welcome alternatives. Gimp has always been somewhat frustrating because of little stuff like this.
As a user, I think about "saving" as a process to persist my work. If there might be technical fine-grained issues, show me a warning sign in the save dialog, but don't come up with a process that "makes me think".
PNG is just a compressed pixel-to-colorspace format. It does not and cannot contain most of the information in your work. When you save a .png you're basically doing something similar to compiling C to machine language. You permanently lost all the high level information, possibly in a way you cannot track back (in the case of .JPG). This is not saving, your work will not persist, the format you're "saving" is specifically engineered in a way it doesn't persist any more information than it needs. I hope we agree thus far. As I said above, it's merely a terminological difference, in gimp this process is called "exporting" and I can't understand why this is such a big deal. You literally wouldn't be able to navigate Gimp or Photoshop or Blender etc without having basic knowledge about the program (i.e. looking at the manual) like where menus are etc, and this is just one instance.
> If there might be technical fine-grained issues, show me a warning sign in the save dialog, but don't come up with a process that "makes me think".
Is this a joke? You literally have to just click the very next button under "Save" which reads "Export As". What "makes you think"?
My favorite was probably PaintShop Pro before 10, and second is probably Paint.Net (if it had a few more features). A simple, easy to use interface with the majority of features really accessible. Gimp offers so much more, though frankly, it's about 10x as hard to use. I only do so when I want to do something that's difficult in Paint.Net or Krita.
I want to like it, I want to use it... that said, If you had a few users who like other software use it, nobody I know would choose Gimp over other tools as a preference. I don't always like changes that are made to an application I've used for a while, and can understand resistance from Gimp developers and users. It doesn't matter, sometimes convention should win, sometimes making things easier means change, and sometimes making things consistent means an inferior technical choice.
As someone that edits PNGs and JPGs often with Photoshop I double click the file in the Finder (mac) or Windows Explorer (win) and suddenly I'm editing the PNG or JPG. I make some edits, if I add layers or features that can't be saved back to those formats I flatten the editing (Cmd-Shift-E, of course also on menus in 2 places). I then just press Cmd-S/Ctrl-S to save. No questions asked, no dialog pops up. Click->Edit->Save. If you have to edit often it's a huge difference with no interrupt in workflow.
But as I said this just one annoyance of many.
I have no intention of logging these as bugs because from my perspective they are implemented as per the developers’ vision.
But not mine. So I use other applications because I find them faster. And again, I’m not a photoshop guru so don’t think this is about comfort and learned keybindings or other muscle memory.
GEGL on the other hand is something I’m going to investigate further. Being able to use that for workflow would be very useful.
There are just too many special-use-case tools to make a "good" UI. Learn it and forget about what it looks like, it's the only way you'll ever be happy.
No, Photoshop has never had a good UI (neither has Illustrator).
The problem is that people who use Photoshop on a regular basis have memorised the keyboard shortcuts and steps needed to complete tasks. The Photoshop way of doing things, no matter how clunky or unintuitive, is now the natural way of doing things for them (and their frame of reference when trying out another app).
It's no different to a lot of other software e.g. the programmer who won't consider any other editor unless it has the same task flow and keyboard shortcuts they've spent so long committing to memory.
This puts rival apps in a difficult position. Should they copy the same clunky, unintuitive way of doing things to attract users? Or forge a different path? In the case of Photoshop, copying the UI and task flow means users can also take advantage of the gargantuan volume of existing Photoshop books, tutorials and training available.
Illustrator is a pain, fine, whatever.
Photoshops UI is optimized for its workflows. I was able to learn Photoshop easily enough, I've been able to learn other image manipulation programs quickly, but despite having spent many hours in GIMP, I hate every minute of using it.
If I go "create new image", there isn't an option to create a new image that is the size of the image on my clipboard.
There is not a dedicated "interact with this selection" tool, like the arrow tool in PS, instead there is a tool that sometimes draws new boundaries, bit the rectangle select tool also moves newly pasted layers, which is a different action than the move tool, which is also confusing.
Pasting just sucks. Why is it a new floating layer that I then have to right click on and say "new layer", just create a new layer, not this annoying psuedo-layer thing.
Everytime I want to move something I have selected, I want to scream. I create a selection, so, move tool right? NO. The move tool lets me move layers I have made. Joy.
In fact after having spent a couple minutes on it, I still can't figure it out, but then again why GIMP is so damn confusing I have to figure things out every time I use it? Good programs are learned, GIMP is suffered through.
The way to move something that is selected is the same in literally every other image manipulation program ever made, but GIMP has to be different.
Hilariously enough, all other transforms on selections are super easy, just not translates.
Actually, you know what, I just looked it up.
To move the selected pixels, the user is supposed to control-alt-drag, then release control and alt, and keep dragging.
One of the most common interactions in an image manipulation program is hidden behind a double-meta with a click drag attached to it, and then a release of that double-meta?
That is jaw droppingly bad UI.
I wonder if maybe they shouldn't go with a XUL like system where the UI can be greatly customized by third parties. Someone would undoubtedly create the Photoshop clone UI and make a bunch of people happy.
The idea of an independant open source project focusing itself on producing a commercial quality UI seems a little ludicrous to me. This type of UI requires continued multi-disciplinary effort and process over a timeframe of years. And this is the exact weak spot of projects funded entirely/mostly on a volunteer/contribution basis.
This idea of a highly customizable toolkit (a la Emacs for graphics), in contrast, goes to the strengths of the open source model. Open source projects tend to be developer-heavy, and developers tend to like to build frameworks/abstractions... so a natural fit. Frameworks tend to be easier to use when the underlying code is available for various kinds of inspection, so the open source model fits there too. I'm not saying it'd necessarily be a cakewalk, but it seems like a closer fit to that OSS is really good at.
(Of course, frameworks are more complex and expensive to develop than single applications, so this idea has that going against it.)
Edit: or rather, create a SketchUp clone with good 2D projection/export (Blender isn't for casual use)
Back when the GIMP was developed your options were pretty limited. There was Athena Widgets which are basically the cave drawings of the computer world. Motif which had licensing issues. OpenWindows widgets which were notoriously buggy and ugly. There wasn't much else to choose from. There's a reason GTK exploded so quickly after release.
GIMP is a highly featureful project with powerful scripting capabilities. I wouldn’t say it isn’t already on par or more powerful than Photoshop.
There are web-based photoshop clones that offer better usability than GIMP. I shiver in disgust saying this out loud but it's true at this point. They're slow, more minimalist in terms of features but they don't have buttons that overlap or scroll bars popping up out of nowhere. The GIMP UI is an unusable mess. It's the UI equivalent of "programmer art".
Having just woken up, deprived of my morning caffeine, this sentence sent my brain for a real loop :)
It's not aesthetics. You make it sound trivial. People aren't talking about things like how the icons are designed. They mean the workflow.
I think the issues are getting confused. Yes, Lightroom saves a separate file from your photos of the changes so in that sense it's non destructive, the original files are not changed.
Photoshop is non-destructive in that you can load an image into a layer and apply tons of layers above that layer each of which edits the layers below it in some way. The pixels in the image layer are never changed so it's also "non-destructive". But saving the file does overwrite the old photoshop file with your changes, unlike lightroom.
This is the fatal error. Humans are the ones using that tool. What you call aesthetics is functionality.
We’re not talking about making it prettier we’re talking about making it more usable.
On top of that, it’s an image editing tool. It’s a tool that people use for the purpose of creating visual, often-times “aesthetic” works, and yet the UI is not important? Well then more humans making the decision to use it is not important.
In my opinion, GIMP is the evidence that these efforts are misplaced, and focus should be the UI (at least after core functionality exists). No point is a fancy pants program that nobody actually wants to use.
I have a feeling that in many ways it's just a lack of resources to move things faster.
I don't just mean technical inertia which is probably large given GIMP's size and long history, but also people inertia. UI tends to be the ultimate bikeshedding  blackhole. Few people have an opinion about how a denoising filter should be implemented. Several orders of magnitude more have feelings about the UI should look and the workflow should function.
You could conceivably raise enough money from stakeholders to do this properly with a few experienced UI developers, proper user testing etc.
I'd like to help contribute to some projects where I can lend a (non-development) hand, but being code-based projects, they don't feel set up to accept it.
Firefox has a lot more commercial support than something like Gimp, which is supported primarily through contributions in various forms. What this means is that it's harder to turn down contributions and harder to implement the kind of process that'd be required for a more coherent UI. As simple as it might seem at first, it really is a whole 'nother ball game.
What do you do instead? Are you using GIMP entirely through the scripting interface? How are you using a graphical image editor without looking at the user interface?
Open source is usually built with consensus and that is why it’s hard to follow “one vision”. Also hard to chuck out contributed code / features, specially when its voluntary since it’s not welcoming for new contributors.
But maybe that's because I started out on Blender and only had a cursory look at Maya.
Same with GIMP. I have years of experience working with GIMP so if you sat me in front of photoshop I'd probably be a lot less productive with it. Maybe when people say "improve the UI" they just mean "Make it more like the program I'm already used to".
Blender is pretty much the only program I use of the 100s I have that doesn't follow this UI pattern so I can't take all the knowledge of the other 100s of apps I use and apply that knowledge to blender. Even limiting to just 3D programs I can figure out Maya, 3DSMax, Cinema 3D, DAZ etc just by doing what I do in all other software. Select stuff and then see what my options are. Blender though doesn't follow these rules. You can't just explore. You absolutely have to read the manual to even just load, select, move, and save. Something I can do in all other software without a manual.
Which is exactly the complaint :D
Blender has a very efficient UI that is great for power users, but it has a much bigger learning curve than the competition with their point&click UIs. Add to that that most people are trained on Maya/3ds Max/Cinema 4d, learning Blender is a big investment with uncertain payoff.
Basically the same reason why very few people use Emacs or Vim nowadays.
Wow, this is such a bold statement; do you have any evidence to support this? In my experience a very great majority of engineers use vim or emacs. In US, I've never been in a culture where emacs or vim is used by a minority. In my current work, which is a startup in Boston, everyone except 2 developers use emacs. I googled for evidence to support me, but I couldn't find any solid evidence neither supporting nor disputing me.
The best evidence I could find is the Stackoverflow Survey . Around the middle it asks for the "most popular development environments" (multiple selection possible). The leaders are Visual Studio Code, Visual Studio and Notepad++ with 34% each, followed by Sublime. Vim is fifth place, Emacs 15th place with just 4.1%. But it's heavily dependent on the community you look at, for example Vim is less popular with mobile developers and very popular with sysadmins/devops.
There is also a "prefered code editor" in the golang survey. Vim is second most popular, yet Vim and Emacs make for only a combined 16%.
According to the Rust survey  the rust community seems to love Vim though. 46% use Vim and 15.4% use Emacs.
A Python survey (by Jetbrains) has Vim at 10% and Emacs at 3%.
So from a quick look Emacs seems to be used by 2-4% of developers on a regular basis, while Vim use varies heavily between communities. So I might have to retract my statement on Vim, but I feel reasonably confident to say that Emacs is used by a tiny minority of people.
There are more Vim and Emacs users now than ever before, because there are now more computer programmers than ever before. There are just a lot more people that use other editors/IDEs. Just like there were more Visual Basic users than Emacs/Vim users in the 1990s. The Visual Basic/IDE people are irrelevant as far as Emacs/Vim/Unix/Free Software is concerned because they are unaware of what Free Software actually is (they do have a lot of misconceptions, ones that they really like to flame about on Internet forums), do not understand why they should ever contribute to Free Software, and even if they wanted to do so, they do not have the skills to contribute to Unix/Free Software. Just like all the Visual Basic chair warmers disappeared leaving behind their shitty cobbled-together software, so too will the current generation of people that do not have the capacity or interest to figure out Vim/Emacs/Unix, to be replaced by the next wave of popular garbage software. In another twenty years, more people than ever will still be using Vim/Emacs.
GIMP, however... makes me (every so slightly) annoyed every time I use it. I have to google so many task that should just be intuitive.
It does the job, and I still use it as my primary editor - but it's not something I look forward to opening... but it could be! I'm hoping it'll get there eventually!
If none of these are your cup of tea, please make a PR - It’s open source. :)
That said, Krita and Blender are very very nice.
The Photoshop thing, on the other hand, on the rare occasions I am forced to venture there, strikes me as a confusing mess that I'm always happy to leave behind as soon as possible. Plus of course it requires one kind or another of strange proprietary OS in order to function.
Honestly, they'd probably have to spin it off into a separate, UI-focused project that starts with minimal features and gradually adds more every time a good UI solution is found. In the order of what real-world users identify as the most needed features.
In other words, I believe what GIMP needs is a partnership with an idealistic professional workplace willing to use it as an experiment and communicate their day to day issues.
So you're surprised it's hard to find UI designers willing to work for free? I'd argue the surprising part is that there are programmers that ARE willing to work for free or reduced rates on open source.
Both of these disciplines take time and effort to learn and then perform. The people that do them not only pay these costs, but have their own obligations to themselves and their loved ones they might need to help support. It doesn't surprise me at all that the vast majority of people with these skills choose (or are forced by circumstance) to do something else.
Windows > Single Window Mode.
Windows > New Toolbox
Windows > Dockable Dialogs > Tool Options
It is hard to convey how much more comfortable I feel with the program with these tiny settings changes. I wonder how many other people are in the same boat as I.
I spend a lot of time in a grid style interface, so it is great to see:
* View > Show Grid
* View > Snap to Grid
Click once somewhere. Hold shift to draw a point to point line. Hold shift and control to have wider snapping of angles and click again, hold control and shift to get 15 Degree increment angles.
I will use Gimp a lot more now. Previously I was trying to use Pinta, but it would crash regularly on me making it almost unusable.
If you don't, it's barely usable, with very bad UX defaults.
Tldr; (from handshake.org) Handshake is a decentralized, permissionless naming protocol compatible with DNS where every peer is validating and in charge of managing the root zone with the goal of creating an alternative to existing Certificate Authorities.
Holy jumping jesus, this is the best scam I have ever SEEN! They've scammed a bunch of VCs into investing in their ICO, and they're now going to give the money to FOSS projects with no obligation! This project of course is doomed, but this is a great way to infuse cash into FOSS without having to actually ask for donations.
$100k is a sizable donation. I would have hoped that it could do more for the project than update some hardware and organize a hackfest. That's not to say donations in general shouldn't be used for those things. I just would have assumed that a donation of this size would have been best utilised as salary/salaries, allowing contributors to focus a more significant portion of their time on GIMP, and be compensated accordingly.
2) This team has proven their dedication by sacrificing immense time & opportunity - some of them, for years - to work on this fantastic gift to the world. Not that it's your call, or mine - the $ was given to them, not you or me - but I say let 'em spend it however they see fit.
I don't disagree with this one bit.
> Not that it's your call, or mine - the $ was given to them, not you or me - but I say let 'em spend it however they see fit.
I'm just postulating, not complaining. Surely that's acceptable.
You're also assuming that all the developers absolutely want to spend the money this way. There may well be a core contributor willing to do more, but uncomfortable with idea of suggesting they take the money, and is too scared to speak up. If there is such a person, I say "go for it".
but well, Gimp as served me well, has been there so long that the only thing I can say is kudo's to the devs. they could even pay themselves a bit, that'd well be deserved.
GNOME in total last year only spent $110k on salaries with $300k in revenue (also they had $670k in the bank). Based on their past filings, they look pretty fiscally responsible.
GIMP is obviously useful so I'm glad they have money to use, but if they are already decently covered, there are a thousand other important projects which could benefit from donations. When compared to letting half a million sit in a bank somewhere, I am wondering if this was the best purpose for the money.
I'm not sure what you'd propose to do with it exactly?
> allowing contributors to focus a more significant portion of their time on GIMP
I never said anything about hiring full-time engineers.
Also, there are plenty of people willing to be paid a little less to work on something open-source, and something that they take great pride in. We have to be careful not to take advantage of such people, but some people are in a position where they can afford to earn a little less to do something they love.