First, it's not clear whether you are bothered by the resources
Gimp consumes in creating lots of layers, or by the nuisance of 
managing them.  If it's the former, don't worry about it:  text
layers are very lightweight, and you can create hundreds of them
without putting much of a burden on Gimp.  If it's the latter, that's
a different story.  At some point Gimp will get the ability to
group layers together and collapse the groups in the Layers 
dialog, but not quite yet.

The best suggestion that I can think of, if you really want the old
nasty behavior back, since your situation is probably so unusual as 
not to be worth supporting in the core, is that it would be possible to 
write a plug-in that would behave more or less like the old text tool:  
you would make a selection, activate the plug-in, a dialog box would pop 
up allowing you to type some text, and when you press Okay the text would 
be written onto the image at the site of your selection.

  -- Bill


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