Re: [Gimp-developer] re. suggestions

Hi Shlomi Fish. Thanks for weighing in on it.

I do not feel the GIMP project is a company in the sense that the quote
you've posted suggests.
I feel we are more a community of content contributors, users, and

For example, the GIMP project is not subject to the same market forces as a
company, or indeed most proprietary software providers are.
It is not kill or be killed for us, and our "product" will exist and be
useful long after the "company" has gone (such is the power of Free and
Open Source Software), because anyone can pick up the code and continue the
work. If Adobe dies, Photoshop dies.

Do we want people to use our software?
Of course we do.
Do we offer (for free) a product that can replace Photoshop?
Yes, we do that as well.

But we do not need to play the feature-parity competition game with
Photoshop, because we are not selling anything.

Directly from the GIMP license:

"GIMP is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY
without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A

So to say we offer GIMP to be a replacement for Photoshop is actually not
something that we do.

GIMP is an image manipulation program that can replace Photoshop, but "to
replace Photoshop" is not its purpose.

Do people use it to replace Photoshop in their work? Definitely.
I think there's much more power in that than us telling people to replace
Photoshop with GIMP.

We already show what both hobbyists and professionals use GIMP for, and
that's good enough.

It's all a bit of a moot point, since the question is from a new user, and
not someone switching from Photoshop.
So in this case more than any other GIMP is not even being used as a
replacement for Photoshop. :)

It will serve them well as a photo/graphics editor, which is what it was
designed to be, not merely a replacement for a single (albeit very popular)
proprietary software package.

My 2p.


On Tue, Mar 29, 2016 at 2:12 PM, Shlomi Fish <shlomif shlomifish org> wrote:

Hi all,

my email to the list did not arrive, so I'm sending it again while
all hyperlinks.


        Shlomi Fish

Hi C R!

See below for my response:

On Sun, 27 Mar 2016 23:26:14 +0100
C R <cajhne gmail com> wrote:

To C.R.:  I think your proposed change to the download page (adding"93
just above the download button for GIMP for Windows) is easy, simple,
clear.  I recommend it highly!

We used to list the file size on the download buttons. Apparently the
feature didn't get added to the new web layout (which is much better than
our old one in almost every way possible) I'm sure it's just an

To Alex:  What do I suggest you do about it?  I thought that the features
of the latest version of Photoshop could be listed and tried, and any
features that anyone likes in any other programs, as well as original
ideas, and that GIMP could be presented so that even the relatively
inexperienced (like me!) could easily and quickly understand that those
useful features are available, what they are, and how to find and
conveniently use them.

Where on the Adobe website does it list the features of Photoshop
to GIMP?
GIMP is not made to be competition with Photoshop, and conversely,
Photoshop is not made to be in competition with GIMP. They are both
sophisticated image editors, but they are different programs. They are
simply built for similar purposes.This is why you will not see a
feature-comparison done on either website.

Well, it seems that "Joel on Software" has recommended the opposite
(and I tend to agree with him) here:

Quoting from it:


When you're trying to get people to switch from a competitor to your
you need to understand barriers to entry, and you need to understand them
a lot
better than you think, or people won't switch and you'll be waiting tables.

In an earlier letter, I wrote about the difference between two kinds of
companies: the Ben and Jerry's kind of company which is trying to take over
from established competition, versus the kind of company which
trying a "land grab" in a new field where there is no established
When I worked on Microsoft Excel in the early 90's, it was a card-carrying
member of the Ben and Jerry's camp. Lotus 123, the established competitor,
an almost complete monopoly in the market for spreadsheets. Sure, there
new users buying computers who started out with Excel, but for the most
if Microsoft wanted to sell spreadsheets, they were going to have to get
to switch.

The most important thing to do when you're in this position is to admit it.
Some companies can't even do this. The management at my last employer,
was unwilling to admit that AOL had already achieved a dominant position.
spoke of the "millions of people not yet online." They said that "in every
market, there is room for two players: Time and Newsweek, Coke and Pepsi,
The only thing they wouldn't say is "we have to get people to switch away
AOL." I'm not sure what they were afraid of. Perhaps they thought they were
afraid to "wake up the sleeping bear". When one of Juno's star programmers
not me) had the chutzpah, the unmitigated gall to ask a simple question at
company meeting: "Why aren't we doing more to get AOL users to switch?"
hauled him off, screamed at him for an hour, and denied him a promotion he
been promised. (Guess who took his talent elsewhere?)

There's nothing wrong with being in a market that has established
In fact, even if your product is radically new, like eBay, you probably
competition: garage sales! Don't stress too much. If your product is
better in
some way, you actually have a pretty good chance of getting people to
But you have to think strategically about it, and thinking strategically
thinking one step beyond the obvious.


Like it or not - GIMP is an alternative program to (and in much the same
as) Adobe Photoshop. We should be aiming to make people use GIMP (or a
open-source program) instead of or at least in addition to Photoshop. So
stop beating around the bush and admit it.

Now, if Photoshop were
FOSS and ran fine on
most common open source OSes, then it wouldn't be a major issue. But it's
proprietary software, and runs only on Windows and Mac OS X, and costs a
lot of money, and has many other issues that you mentioned below, and so
situation is not ideal.

Since you are new to both programs, I recommend GIMP. The time you would
spend learning Photoshop is about the same as the time it takes to learn

For your effort, get these advantages:
1. You get a software application that will dutifully serve your
photo-editing needs, for free, for both professional and hobbyist uses
without limitation.
2. You get free updates, and will never have to pay any money for GIMP.
3. You will never be bothered by license keys that run out, or other
software imposed DRM protection that gets in the way of your work.
4. You will be able to work on any Desktop OS you choose, be it Linux,
or Windows, giving you the freedom to choose your working environment and
take your tools with you if you decide to switch.
5. You will have a program that you can modify and re-program for your
needs when you become an advanced user.
6. You can teach and learn graphic design, and photo editing without
requiring your student(s) or teacher(s) to buy and install locked-down
expensive proprietary software, or buy software subscriptions.
7. You can participate in a friendly and helpful community that spans
FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) application projects. Many of whom
will seem like family after a while. :)
8. You will produce graphics in a construction format (.xcf) that can be
given to and edited by anyone using GIMP, for free.
9. You can get live help with your problems on irc channels, and mailing
lists, and get to speak to the developers and other contributors to the

 Additionally, there are numerous forums all over the internet full of
happy GIMP users, and tons of books, manuals, and videos devoted to doing
everything you would like to (both novice and professional) using GIMP.

So, welcome to the community. :)
I recommend starting here:

This was very good marketing, in my opinion. You mentioned many advantages
GIMP over Photoshop. Of course, there's still a long way to go.


        Shlomi Fish

[Date Prev][Date Next]   [Thread Prev][Thread Next]   [Thread Index] [Date Index] [Author Index]