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Feature prioritization

This is roughly how the core GIMP development team prioritizes feature development. Note that this does not mean we are not interested in contributions in other areas, or contributions of low prio features. Contributions of any kind are always welcomed. But at the end of the day, it is better to have one feature 100% complete than two features 50% complete, which is why features should be prioritized and then worked on in order.


Status Column:

work hasn't started yet
work in progress
implementation finished
Feature Status Comments
Support layer masks on layer groups work in progress Bug 51112
Cleanup libgimp work in progress (including major changes to plugin registration API)
Port to GTK3 work in progress git branch "gtk3-port"
High bit depths work in progress
Preview filters on canvas Yes Will be available in 2.10
Automatic layer boundary management No Bug 93639
Filter/Adjustment layers No API for stacking GEGL ops on a layer will be available in 2.10
Layer effects No (bevel/emboss, drop shadow etc.)
Auto-anchoring of floating selection No
Turn the IWarp plug-in into an on-canvas tool work in progress GSoC2011 project, available in Git master
Script recording and playback No Bug 51937
Smart objects No Bug 694206
Merge basic transformation tools work in progress Unified transform tool, GSoC2012 project available in Git master
Better support for image metadata work in progress Bug 704796, Bug 61499
Support the XDG Base Directory Specification Yes
Canvas rotation Yes Will be available in 2.10
High-end CMYK support No Low priority
Support for more brush engines No MyPaint, various real media simulations. Low priority

Expected availability of developed features

Starting with GIMP 2.10, features will be developed in isolation on feature branches and be merged to the main branch when they are ready.
The list below shows when coming features are expected to be ready, but that might change.

Last updated: 25.05.2013

  • GIMP 2.10
    • High bit depths: fully port to GEGL (work in progress)
    • OpenCL in GEGL (GSoC 2011 project, see also the Porting Matrix)
    • Support layer masks on layer groups
    • Cleanup libgimp, deprecate all ancient pixel fiddling API
    • Warp tool (GSoC 2011 project)
    • Seamless cloning (GSoC 2011 project)
    • GtkEntry-Widget instead of GimpSizeEntry (GSoC 2011 project, parts already integrated in GIMP 2.8)
    • Unified transform tool (GSoC 2012 project, work in progress)
    • Update foreground selection tool to use advanced matte operations from GEGL Bug 709875, work in progress, stalled
    • Unified configuration path across platforms (using XDG when relevant) [done]
    • Auto-anchoring of floating selection - or better, get rid of floating selections!
    • Better support for image metadata (work in progress, master branch)
  • GIMP 3.0
    • Port to GTK3 [work in progress, branch gtk3-port]
  • "Future" The features here are on the roadmap, but have no milestone yet
    • Improvements in the text handling
    • Preview filter effects on canvas instead in preview window
    • Automatic layer boundary management
    • Filter layers
    • Layer effects
    • Non-destructive editing
    • Script recording and playback
    • "Smart objects"