The GIMP is Loose

By on March 24, 2004

The GIMP – The GNU Image Manipulation Program has just released version 2.0, which cleans up the interface a great deal. The GIMP has always been very feature rich, but Photoshop users considered it difficult to use (although many GIMPers would say the same of Photoshop).

Started in 1995 by Spencer Kimball and Peter Mattis, the GIMP has evolved into a mature and powerful application. The latest release has major improvements in the user interface, making the GIMP more accessible for casual users as well as graphics professionals. The quality of the code base has also been substantially improved, making it easier for the open source community to contribute useful and high-quality add-ons to the GIMP.

I’ve been using the 2.0 prerelease version for some time now, and it’s a pretty great program. With Adobe increasingly backing away from the Mac, if I were a Mac Photoshopper, I’d get familiar with The GIMP.



  1. Many Gimp Users say that because they are open source bigots. When a photoshop user says it is harder to use, that’s because he has an objective criteria. I tried to use both at the same time, Gimp is definitely harder to use. Photoshop has so many nice touches.

  2. And which program did you use first? I’ll agree that a lot of people blindly tout the GIMP for the licensing issue, but I’ve also heard a lot of folks who have used the GIMP since it first rolled out, and stick with it because it’s what they know. I’d say that it’s impossible to have an impartial view of the issue unless you’ve never used either program.

  3. I used Gimp first I believe. Usability is not something so subjective when it comes to Gimp vs Photoshop. I am just suprised how much people blur something so obvious. The featureset, the ability move things around etc… is so much easier on Photoshop. I am saying that claiming that it is uncertain is itself pretty much wrong and doesn’t make sense. Just use common sense, it is not something you can debate about. The question of getting used to a program has nothing to do with making an objective evaluation of comparing the usability of these two programs. I get used to pine, Outlook is harder to use me now, but that doesn’t mean Outlook is harder than pine does it?

  4. I used The Gimp 2.0 for the first time to night and really enjoyed it. It doesn’t make up for a complete lack of graphic talent, but it seems very, very competent.

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