How much further GIMP 2.8 is delayed

How much further GIMP 2.8 is delayed

Martin Nordholts, core GIMP developer, finally finished his web app that helps tracking progress of software and, in particular, GIMP.

You can view the chart here. While October 2011 doesn't sound very optimistic, there are some things for you to know before you make conclusions.

First of all, Martin uses same approach to estimation that he used before: amount of work for one person to do based on 8 hours of work a day. His estimation has proven to be right in some cases and wrong in others; on average they balance out, though. Whether they will balance out again — it's something noone can tell for sure.

Next, the full implementation of optional single-window is still partially blocked by missing functional spec. Peter Sikking already interviewed interns willing to work on GIMP's usability within m+mi works company and intends to plug them into development shortly.

In general, the way to talk about GIMP 2.8 in past tense is to pick a task from the list and hack on it. If you are not a programmer, there's a bunch of work on the website to do, and while it won't affect release of 2.8 directly, contributions happen to motivate the core team, and motivation is a wonderful thing that affects development in so many surprising ways.

Finally, one of the reasons 2.8 is continuously delayed is that the team tried to do too much with too little manpower. The team is addressing this problem by splitting big tasks tasks between smaller releases. The currently available feature roadmap says:

  • GIMP 2.8
    • Single-window mode
    • Layer groups
  • GIMP 2.10
    • Cleanup libgimp
  • GIMP 3.0
    • Port to GTK3
    • High bit depths
  • GIMP 3.2
    • Automatic layer boundary management
    • Filter layers and "Layer effects"
  • GIMP 3.4
    • Auto-anchoring of floating selection - or better, get rid of floating selections!
  • GIMP 3.6
    • Script recording and playback
    • "Smart objects"
  • GIMP 3.8
    • Unified transform tool

It's worth noting that some of the big tasks mentioned there are among GSoC2011 ideas, and at least unified transform tool was picked by a few potential students (whether any of them will be accepted, we shall find out in a couple of weeks). Apart from that, the GTK+3 port is a work in progress since last winter. It's quite possible that by the time work on 3.0 officially starts the port will be complete.

Start of GIMP's progress tracker is not the only effort to make GIMP's development more trasparent and attractive. If you followed the roadmap link above, you noticed that unofficial Alexia's wiki has finally become official wiki.gimp.org. There are even more improvements to development transparence planned. Stay tuned for updates.

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3 Responses. Comments closed for this entry.

  1. Yes, free transform tool!!! :D

  2. Any estimation when 3.6 might be out?...
    Macro recording and layer folders is what I’ve been waiting for ever since I first started using Gimp. version 2.2 I believe it was.
    I love that we finally have layer folders. Macros is equally essential for professional work in my opinion. Looks like we’ll have to wait another 5-10 years for that.

    Kudos to the development team for cleaning the workshop up a little with this release estimation tool.

  3. There isn’t such estimation yet.