On Tuesday 27 November 2001 02:18, Branko Collin wrote:
<snip>
> > > 3.  A page on the GIMP site should be dedicated to the topic of "How
> > to
> >     transition from Photoshop to the GIMP successfully."  The
> >     community would be a lot larger if more people realized that 'you
> >     get what you pay for' is a false statement; get professional
> >     artists interested in GIMP and the development potential would
> >     skyrocket.  Once professionals depend on GIMP, then we may even
> >     see some corporate funding for making GIMP do all the things that
> >     need to be done:  CMYK, serious halftoning, and easy font work
> >     come to mind, but that's just the tip of the iceberg.
>
> I thought you were working on such a tutorial?

Has anyone looked at any Photoshop books? I use Gimp at home under Linux, and 
yesterday I happened to find myself at a Mac with Photoshop. The experience 
reminded me of my first days with Gimp. So how did all those Photoshop users 
learn how to control the program? How about getting a popular Photoshop book 
and copying the structure, but using Gimp instead?

Having said that, I think the tutorials and the manual are pretty good, it's 
just not that easy to find them. I like the idea of having the website be an 
extension of the UI, however, do remember that not everybody has 24/7 web 
access, and needing a web link to look up some feature quickly is not yet a 
viable option I think.

Last thingy, about professional use of Gimp, isn't this a bit of a 
chicken-and-egg thing? I can't imagine anyone using a program that doesn't do 
CMYK, serious halftoning and easy font work (with the added note that my X 
server crashes regularly on TrueType fonts rendered larger than 100 px or so) 
for professional print graphics. Having worked together with those 
professionals quite a bit lately I think Gimp needs to be quite a bit better 
still.

<snip>
> The new gimp.org will in all probability have more sections for more
> parts of the community. So far, gimp.org has been the prototypical
> Corporate Website, the folder-on-the-net. Address and product
> information you can get, but if you want support, communities,
> downloads, what have you, you will have to look elsewhere. Gimp.org
> at least did one better than most other corporate sites by at least
> linking to all the elsewheres.
>
> > Lastly, the mentality of "we don't care if you use it, we develop GIMP
> > for us" is the keystone of exclusivity and elitism,
>
> There is nothing wrong with exclusivity and elitism per se...
<snip>
> Maybe. I think that is your personal opinion. Me, I do it for my itch
> to be scratched and because it looks good on my portfolio and because
> I like the GIMP development community. In the end, you decide what is
> rewarding for you.

I think the problem we have here is that there's quite a big difference 
between the developers and the users of the program. The people who make open 
source racing games probably do that because they like to play racing games 
as well. The average Gimp developer seems to do it because they like to write 
image manipulation software, things like writing filters and scripts and 
stuff, not necessarily because they like making digital art. The users of the 
program aren't very interested in the technology behind it all, they just 
want something to help them create their images. What I think the new website 
should do is explain to the programmers that doing something like this for 
your CV is nice, but nobody will be impressed if the program isn't used by 
anybody. And that the maintainers won't accept contributions that don't help 
the users in some way. On the other hand, the users should know that there 
are a bunch of developers who make it possible for them to use this great 
program, and that that's where they should go with feature requests and 
proposals for improvement of the program. Or in other words, these two groups 
of people, developers and users, should become one group of Gimp enthusiasts.

I'd like to suggest a way to try and achieve this. About three years ago, 
game development company Lionhead (www.lionhead.com) started a discussion 
board on their website. There were different fora within the board, for 
different subjects. Amongst others there was a programming board and a board 
to discuss the (then upcoming) game Black&White. What happened was that the 
programmers, who normally aren't that gamesy, started posting on the B&W 
board as well, discussing the game with the gamers, while the gamers ended up 
on the programming board with questions such as "hey, seen this screenshot, 
how did they do that?" and "I'd like to start programming too! How?".

Ofcourse there are mailinglists for developers and users, but these are more 
or less separate entities, just like the Gimp user community and the Gimp 
developer community are separate entities. Web boards are a bit more 
userfriendly than mailinglists (ie they are easier to grok for Jon Foo who 
just yesterday bought his new computer at Wal-Mart and now wants to make 
pretty graphics with Gimp) and you can make it pretty clear in the layout 
that it's one big board, just with different fora for different subjects. 
Have a look at www.lionhead.com/board to see what I mean (the B&W boards have 
now closed, and things have quieted down a bit after the release of B&W, but 
the setup is still the same).

Wow, that's gotten a bit longer than I expected. Oh well. One more rant for 
the list :).

Lourens
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