A number of people have made helpful suggestions both on and off the
list, but none of them exactly hit the spot.

The guash in particular is an improvement on my current practice, but
there is still potentially a 15 minute gap (told you it was a slow
machine) between starting gimp and having previews for all my
images. And an honourable mention should go to selecting all images in
the open dialogue and then pressing "generate preview".

However, I think I need to say more about the way I want to work
 1. Download images from camera - say 50 different 500K images all
    named things like p5030956.jpg
 2. I already run a script that uses imagemagick's convert to produce
    several smaller versions of the pictures. It uses nice so I can go
    and read my mail, play tetris etc while it is working. I would
    like to extend this script to pre-generate preview thumbnails so
    that gimp will take notice and use them.
 3. Browse the (smaller versions of the) images using gqview. Smaller
    and faster than gimp for this purpose, and it has a slideshow
    mode. And you can use it to launch gimp on an image, but at least
    in my version it starts a whole new instance of gimp for each one,
    so I don't usually do that.
 4. Choose an image that needs manipulating or printing, and decide to
    open it in gimp. Normally I switch to a different virtual desktop
    to start the gimp (to stop things getting too cluttered). 
    Unfortunately my brain is too small to have remembered if it was
    p5030956.jpg or p5030955.jpg that I wanted to open, hence the
    need to look at the previews in the gimp, and the irritating delay
    that I want to avoid.

I am not completely averse to changing the way I work, but I would
much rather change the way my machine works for me.


  Gilbert Laycock                 email:          [EMAIL PROTECTED]
  Maths and Computer Science,     http://www.mcs.le.ac.uk/~glaycock
  University of Leicester         phone:         (+44) 116 252 3902
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