Free Desktop Graphic Suite

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Revision as of 14:56, 31 March 2010 by Legio noctis (talk | contribs)
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Common interface for graphic programs on the free desktop.

Many artists use several applications in their workflow. This includes using one program for photo editing, one for illustration and one for page layout. To ease the user experience for someone using these apps, consistency in wording, looks and similar working tools needs to be adressed.

The three programs that will be adressed are:

  • GNU Image Manipulator Program aka GIMP (bitmap image editing)
  • Inkscape (scalable graphics illustration)
  • Scribus (page layout)

Common dialogs

Tool consistency

Resources that can be shared:

  • Patterns (PNGs)
  • Gradients (SVGs)
  • Palettes (We need a standard here.) (suggestion: .xml format, based on .ai format (each text line with each colour name and its rgb, cmyk or whatever))
  • Clipart (SVG/PNG)
Could some kind of work-sharing connection be developed: a toolbar with links to import recent/open files in the GIMP/ On Windows at least surely it would be possible through MRUs, on Linux I don't know how it's stored. Would this break platform/software agnosticism, if so, could it be implemented as an extension? Is there a way extensions can create a toolbar in Inkscape itself? Should there be? The GIMP/Openshot/whatever developers should be asked if they would consider adding something like this into their own software. Also, the community needs some kind of universial, portable and standard svg rendering engine that can cope with InkscapeSvg. I think the ability to know that your source svg looks fine in the GIMP or several other programs on anyone else's computer would encourage people to use it a lot more (and would leapfrog the Adobe formats). It would also mean that when you used a vector image in another program you wouldn't have to rasterise it, so output would be better quality. Legio noctis 14:56, 31 March 2010 (UTC)
  • Icons
  • Cursors
  • Color Management
  • Fonts
  • Symbols
  • Filters

To help manage these resources it would probably be wise to try and incorporate some kind of Thumbnail Browser into any such suite. Unfortunately there is no obvious choice of cross platform and open source Thumbnail browser.

Could all the open source projects agree on one location to store all these resources or links to them e.g. ~/.graphicsresources (ugly name, I know) or %appdata%\Graphic resources\.

Could this system be turned into a new open source project/standard of its own? For example, say we called it something like 'Interleave' or 'Pixelshare', for lack of a graphic-y sounding name. We could then say that every Pixelshare-supporting program makes sure that a Pixelshare resources folder has been established. This would then contain a set directory structure, e.g. there could be a database (XML?) of the various programs/files/whatever is needed for efficient operation. For example: /cursors

...insert here either actual files, shortcuts to files or database of files...


I suggest information.xml contains metadata about the programs, what they produce, formats etc, and the (potential) database inside the Inkscape folder actually contains information such as location of the image, when it was last opened, by what, created, by what, notes attached to it, whether it is a derivative of another file in the database etc.

I will try to return to this page and expand on my ideas more solidly. Someone had a grand vision creating this page, and I don't want to see it come to nothing. --legio_noctis, January 2010 (If you're reading this far in the future, shaking your head and sighing: sorry.)

Working on mockups for a toolbar Legio noctis 14:55, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

Feature Requests

There are many features in the GIMP that Inkscape will want to copy such as the Dock Widgets for managing Palettes.

There are also some enhancements to the GIMP like this request for a standard toolbar that would be helpful for Inkscape users.