I have a suggestion about the general philosophy of a workflow in the
GIMP. I haven't found this anywhere in the mail archives, so I'm
hoping it's something new.

While working on an image, performing many steps, I often wish that I
could go back and change one of the steps that I have performed but
not throw away all the work till then. For example make the initial
cropping a little less tight. This is almost possible If I still have
the Undo buffer, but it's impossible if I closed and re-opened the
.XCF. Photoshop allows this to some measure by using Adjustment
Layers, but I think there's an even more straightforward way:

Could we have a saving format (as an alternative to XCF) that saves
the original starting image and all the steps that were performed till
then? Once the file is opened, all the steps are applied in sequence,
and editing can continue where it was left off. Previous steps can be
changed without affecting the parameters of steps after it (so this is
more than just an Undo buffer) and steps can be inserted, moved
around, edited... Implementation-wise, this means saving a script of
operations performed, and being able to move/change those script
commands around. GIMP editing would become a truly reversible process,
in a way no other editing software is! (AFAIK) And the GIMP has almost
all the scripting functionality built in already, so this is not a
huge overhaul project, right?

I can go more in depth about this idea and the (surmountable) issues
that would arise, but tell me if I'm making sense so far? Thank you!

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