I posted this to the c.g.a.gimp group initially but was told that this might be a better place for it. I wanted to discuss it before submitting it as a feature requeset to bugzilla. That way other users of the GIMP can bring their ideas to it (like, whether or not they like it!) and I can make it a bit more focused where it's uncertain (see *highlighted* sentance):
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Precision: I am not a gimp developer, just a user.
It once again occured to me after recently discovering the stroke/fill option that there are many commonly used operations associated with tools that are difficult for users to find. Drawing shapes is a good example of this. GIMP - it has to be said - is not the most intuitive application in the world.
In fact, to utilise tools, one must either open a menu or go to one of the dialogues docked in another window to get at the options one needs, which can be frustrating if it's obscured by the window you're working in. I'm often making 3 or 4 clicks to make a simple change.
You can specify inthe preferences that the toolbox must be "on top". This way, you always have it available...
So, why not associate a toolbox with each tool that can be opened by right clicking in the image window. Currently, right clicking simply opens the menubar, which can be accessed twice already from the image window: it seems like a waste of a mouse button to me. Much better to be able to perform common tasks, such as "path to selection" or "stroke path" instead.
Not everyone is using the menubar (it is optional, see the prefences): I do not. I find it unpractical since I very often use Gimp to work on small images. I think long time gimp users might also use preferentially the right-click menu to the menubar: It allows a faster/more straightforward access to the functionality. To summarise my personal opinion: The right click menu is one of the best things introduced by Gimp.
Compared to the way I use Gimp (toolbox never obstructed by image windows), I found that your way to access the tool options is demanding more click (1 click) that the present way (0 click).
*Precisely what should go in these toolboxes I'm not sure.*
You could also make it flexible and do what you do already with dialogues, providing a number of presets while allowing users the option to customise the toolkit themselves (a system that works excellently imo).
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Btw, this is (more or less) my first post to the mailing list. So I'd just like to say hello to all other gimpers out there and, of course, thank you to any developers watching.
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