Review of "The GIMP"

published 13/10/2000 | Manx
Member since : 09/08/2000
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Excellent
Pro Fee. Powerful. Very good. Kinky Name!
Cons It can be a bit tough to approach.
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"The GIMP. My GIMP. Your GIMP."

The GIMP is software that comes as a “standard extra” in most flavours of Linux. The GIMP also is know available for Windows – at least, there are WebPages which make this claim but I have never seen it in the “flesh.”

The GIMP is widely recognised as a very powerful graphic manipulation tool. It will help you create images from scratch; it will assist you change, filter and transform the pictures and it will then also optimise the way these picture files are stored. As an example, you can optimise animated .gif files so that no frame repeats any static data; if you have an animation of a bird flying through the sky then there is no need to re-draw the sky in each and every frame.

The GIMP lets you easily plug in any collection brushes or tools that you might find on the web. If, for whatever reason, you need a double headed, star shaped brush then you can create your own because it is easy to do that to.

All right, I’ll step back a minute here in the review as it would be easy to run through everything the GIMP does and point out that it does it well. I would be writing for hours though as the GIMP does so much. I will try and be more helpful than that. There are catches with the GIMP. The GIMP looks really simply when you load it up – just a small palette of brushes which give you point and click technology. If, like me, the first then you do is pick up the brush and have a swipe at the canvas then, like me, you’ll be impressed at how nicely the action translates to a good picture. It looks like a brush has been swiped over some real canvas – it does not look like a diagonal chunk of colour, which is the case in even some top-end Windows software. When you start to explore through what the GIMP has to offer, though, you may find that things do not seem to be working right. That is what I thought, but I was wrong. The GIMP uses Layers as default and if you’ve never come across this bit of cunning code it can catch you out.

If you do not know Linux very well then the GIMP might be just a little scary. Just a little. I am student who has very little experience with Linux but I’ve found that playing around with the GIMP and reading the mass of helpful and free tutorials on the web is easily enough to get to grips with the software.


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Ciao

Listed on Ciao since: 30/07/2003