2012/3/12 Mike Finch <info 1sixty com>
2) "Free" is a difficult concept for mainstream users. For those in this community the difference is obvious because it's at the core of who you are as an open-source advocate.. To a 19 year old kid that frequents mtv.com instead of Slashdot, diving into the true definition of "Free" is going to confuse the hell out of them. I agree that the design should reference that it's Free Software, but I'd rather error on the side of mainstream users than the pros in this community.
"Free" will stay a difficult concept for mainstream as long as mainstream users aren't familiar with it :)
Avoiding the term won't help.
GIMP is free software and now that it was relicensed as (L)GPL v3 it's freer than ever.
Perhaps "Free/Libre" instead of just "free" helps to avoid the confusion with "free as in beer", but we shouldn't replace or avoid the concept. It's important.
And if you want to educate mainstream about what Free software is, you can make every mention of Free software a link to a page with an explanation. It's hypertext after all :)
4) There's a fine-line between staging this as a "high-end application" and "for pros". While I would agree that GIMP is indeed a high-end application, it's not an application used by "pros". To keep GIMP's marketing messages authentic, it'd be best to explain that GIMP is absolutely top-notch software, but targeted for an intermediate, mid-level user who wants to make kick-ass photos/icons/whatever.
Personally, I'd avoid both ("high end" and "for pros").
First things first: we can't do high-end manipulation with GIMP yet.
As long as we don't have high bit depth (and probably a non-destructive workflow), GIMP will be pretty harsh with our images quality and claiming it provides high-end image quality isn't acurate. Things are going to change, but atm this is what we have.
"Pro" is a tricky term too. In spanish a professional is just somebody getting a living from certain activity, which s/he performs with a reasonable grade of expertise.
According that definition, anyone working with GIMP, or even MS Paint, creating stuff that looks fine and pays the bills with it is a professional.
Me, for instance. I'm a professional graphic designer using only free software. I have a Graphic Design degree, I get a living doing graphic design and my work has a reasonable quality. If you ask me if GIMP is ready for professional work, I'll say yes and I can prove it.
But if I moved to a high-end market where everyone works with bleeding-edge technology, where everything is likely proprietary, probably I'd be in trouble.
Saying what is and what isn't "professional" depends on the context where the work is done, and that word will have different meanings depending who reads it.
Just my 2 cents
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