Image manipulation is one of the key application areas that needs to be addressed for open source tools to become the mainstream desktop environment. I'm currently funding a number of different open source projects, and am considering funding work on the GIMP or CinePaint.

I've had some discussions with Robin Rowe on the CinePaint front, and would also like to hear from the GIMP community, to help me figure out what the most effective strategy will be.

My goals are:

- to help open source tools reach the point where they compete with Adobe Photoshop for professional use. I understand that the GIMP is a fantastic tool already, as is CinePaint, and that both have some features which are better than any commercial tool, but it's also clear that they both need considerable further work before they become a "no brainer" choice for any professional
- to create capacity in these tools for high end digital photography, cinematography and printing
- to integrate with the best and latest in open source desktop environments, to comply with user interface guidelines and to perform well in usability and discoverability
- there is no goal number 4

I've asked Robin if he will allow me to publish our correspondence to date, on which I'd very much like your feedback and commentary. Regardless of whether we do that, I'd like to hear from the GIMP developers and community.

- Is the GIMP a good platform to build on to try to achieve these goals?
- What functionality would need to be added to the GIMP to challenge Photoshop?
- How would the GIMP team use funding that was made available to them to achieve these goals?
- Why would the GIMP be a better project to support than CinePaint (for the purpose of attaining these specific goals)?
- What impact could funding have in terms of specific deliverables and timeframes?

If this isn't the best forum for this message please accept my apologies and point me to the right place. Thanks for the work you have done in producing an exceptional tool. I'm no image editing expert but I can appreciate the polish and effort required to create and maintain a project such as the GIMP.


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