On Tue, 16 May 2000, Jens Lautenbacher <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> [EMAIL PROTECTED] (Raphael Quinet) writes:
> > I would even go as far as removing the "Add Alpha Channel" option from
> > the menus, and suggest that the prefered method to add transparency to
> > an image that has only one layer is to add a new layer, even if it is
> > deleted immediately.  This is not worse than the method used now by
> > some users (duplicate and delete the original) and I think that it
> > would be more intuitive to some users.
> I would say, simply make a layer by default have alpha always... I
> know I know it's more memory for that 0.001 % of cases where people
> start with one background layer and stick to one the whole time,
> without using alpha....

Hmmm...  No, I think that it makes sense to create single-layer images
without alpha.  If you are working mostly with image formats that do
not support alpha (i.e. JPEG, BMP, PPM, PCX) or if you are not
interested in having transparency anyway, then you probably want the
Gimp to behave as most of the old painting programs behaved: no
layers, no transparency, and "clearing" an area means to fill it with
the background color.  It also saves some memory if you are using the
Gimp to do some color corrections or simple retouching on huge images
(e.g. your photo collection or some scanned images).

But on the other hand, as soon as you start working with multiple
layers, then you need to work with transparency (and to understand the
concepts involved).  That's why I would promote the background layer
to RGBA when you add a second layer.

I still haven't found a good reason to keep the background layer
"special" when the image contains multiple layers.  If the only
reasons are historical or to copy the features of some well-known
commercial program, then we could have this as an option in the
gimprc (but IMHO the default should be to promote the background
layer automatically).


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