Suggestions for GIMP layout

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I'm a new mailing list user so feel free to point out my errors so I can get it
right next time.

I joined the GIMP User mailing list because I was unable to find an easier
way to send feedback of any kind.... and the developer list didn't seem
appropriate because I'm not a developer and wouldn't be.  I simply have
some comments and suggestions that I want to pass on in the hope that
the development group makes some changes to GIMP in the future.

First, to be clear, I'm referring to the most recent version of GIMP which
appears not to have been updated in a long while... v2.6.11

I've *HAD* GIMP for quite some time and occasionally use it but each
time I do I find it a bit too disorganized for my liking so I return to the
software I usually use.  But recently, I upgraded to Windows 7 (64) and
found that my preferred software would not install in the 64-bit environment.
So I had to try something else so there I was looking at GIMP again.

One of my first complaints came when I took a screen shot then pasted
the contents of the clipboard into GIMP and tried to save the file.  My
plan was to save it as a Windows Bitmap (*.BMP) so naturally I selected
SAVE AS... and then arrived at the troublesome SAVE AS window.

1) I noted that the folder tree was not in sync with the SAVE IN folder.
     Not even when I created a new folder did the tree realign itself to
     show the location where that folder had been created.  That made
     it VERY easy to end up creating folders in completely unexpected
     locations.  And of course, finding a misplaced folder is equally
     difficult.  So my first recommendation is that GIMP's SAVE IMAGE
     window be restructured to cause the folder tree under the PLACES
     heading, to always remain in sync with the active folder .... to
     expand to reveal it.  So whether you change the SAVE IN folder
     drop list, or you click one of the folder shortcut buttons, or you
     create a new folder..... however a folder is accessed, the tree should
     always expand to that folder.

2) When I first tried to save my image as a BMP, I tried to do so by
     changing the drop list at the bottom right of the SAVE IMAGE
     window.  It begins with ALL IMAGES as the default so it seemed
     to me that selecting Windows Bitmap (*.BMP) in that list would
     do the trick.... which of course it did not.  Strangely the file was
     given an XCF extension.  It was only after I expanded the item
     entitled LIST FILE TYPE (BY EXTENSION) that my choice of
     the "Windows Bitmap (BMP)" file type took on any meaning.
     The point here is that it wasn't intuitive.  I had to save twice and
     first got something I didn't expect then corrected my mistake to
     achieve the saving of a BMP as expected.  I'm still not clear about
     why the right hand filter exists if it serves no purpose when saving?
     So my second suggestion is to clarify the file type selection for
     saving files so that it becomes intuitive and unmistakable.

3) The third issue is one of esthetics.  GIMP is divided into separate
     windows.  We all see the Toolbox, an Image Window and a Layers
     window.... but they are separate windows rather than child
     processes.  That leads to an interesting problem when you want
     to minimize (not close) GIMP.  Closing GIMP shuts down all the
     open windows but minimizing has effect on only the central image
     window.  In fact, the Toolbox and Layer windows don't even have
     minimize buttons.  So there is no way to actually completely
     minimize GIMP.  There will always be some remnant of it left
     covering the screen unless the Toolbox etc... windows are closed.
     This was really awkward for me as my graphics work has me
     constantly minimizing and restoring.  But maximizing presents
     a similar problem.  Since the Toolbox and Layer windows are
     not child windows, they obstruct the central image window when
     it is maximized and that can get annoying really fast.  In my
     *efforts* to use GIMP I found myself constantly resizing and
     closing and opening different elements of the program and that
     was not only time consuming and required additional effort but
     also left me wanting a different image editing program.  So my
     third suggestion is to consolidate GIMPs Toolbox, Layer and
     similar windows into GIMPs main window so that they are
     child processes and never obstruct the image window.  That
     would also allow for minimizing everything at once.

GIMP seems like a very capable image editing program so I'd really
like to see it continue in development.  And if it does, I hope to see
these suggestions somehow incorporated into it.

Now I just have to cross my fingers and hope that the right people
see this post and feel the same way.

I'm outta here.

HAP

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