Glimpse is a fork of GIMP with no extra feature or whatsoever. But, the name and the logo are now different. So it’s basically GIMP with a new name and branding. When I first heard the name, I thought it was something new and cool. I liked the name as well as the logo. But when I installed it, I kind of got disappointed. Because it is a fork of GIMP 2.8 which is an older version of GIMP that nobody uses. But now Glimpse 0.2 got released and it’s based on GIMP 2.10.18 which is far better than the previous one.
Well if GIMP works fine, and Glimpse does not add anything to the fork, then why does Glimpse exist anyway? It’s because, while GIMP is a robust feature-rich advanced image manipulation software, the name “GIMP ” itself is a big problem for some locals. It is considered as slang or offensive word toward disabled people. And the word means some other nasty things too. Just look at Urban Dictionary Definition of it:
Sure you can call GIMP by its full name, but that’s too long. And everyone calls it by this.
Since it’s an offensive word and some countries can not use the program in many places for obvious reasons. GIMP acknowledged this issue and wrote in their FAQ:
With all due respect, no.
We’ve been using the name GIMP for more than 20 years and it’s widely known.
The name was originally (and remains) an acronym; although the word “gimp” can be used offensively in some cultures, that is not our intent.
On top of that, we feel that in the long run, sterilization of language will do more harm than good. GIMP has been quite popular for a long time in search engine results compared to the use of the word “gimp”. So we think we are on the right track to make a positive change and make “gimp” something people actually feel good about. Especially if we add all the features we’ve been meaning to implement and fix the user interface.
Finally, if you still have strong feelings about the name “GIMP”, you should feel free to promote the use of the long-form GNU Image Manipulation Program or exercise your software freedom to fork and rebrand GIMP.”
So, with community wish and to solve this issue, some folks have forked it and created a version with exact features but different branding. Now, no offensive name issue and a nice flat logo.
Glimpse’s first release was in fact very disappointing to me. Because I wanted to use the software. I liked the new icon and stuff so I planned to replace GIMP with it. But turns out the first release was based on GIMP 2.8 that was way old and deprecated.
GIMP 2.8 was usable, but it was missing many features compared to the latest version. There were missing tools, missing filters, and plugins and was very finicky to work with. And I don’t want to fall into the painful pit of re-adjusting. It’s too hard and stupid when I’m already doing professional stuff.
So I instantly downvoted the idea of replacing my latest GIMP 2.10 with this useless piece of rebranded software. So I moved on. But recently articles popped on
I can imagine that there are some people or corporations still using GIMP 2.8 for the production, so they made it first so people who are using 2.8 and already adapted the workflow will have the cursed branding removed without disrupting the workflow.
But for me, that’s a stupid idea. The latest versions are always better as I’m constantly in need of updates and newer features that make editing easy and fast.
Yesterday when I was scrolling through my feed, I saw an article about the Glimpse team coming with a new release. They improved quite a lot. And they also added few tweaks and new features too. So in this new release of version 0.2.0, they have added or changed a couple of things
- Glimpse is now based on GIMP 2.10
- It now uses photoGIMP keyboard shortcuts
- Re-written windows installer
- Support for Flatpak package
- Changed few configs
- Many small other changes
I think it’s the first-ever release that people should get excited about. It makes a lot of sense now. The development is going in full speed, we got GIMP 2.10.18 which is a quite new and stable release, it is now stable and has Flatpak support.
The Snap version is yet to be updated, but the Flatpak version is already updated and ready to be installed. If you are using ElementaryOS or Linux Mint, you wouldn’t be able to install the current Snap version anyway because it simply won’t start. And there are many people who hate Snap, so Flatpak version release is indeed a good addition for Glimpse.
Glimpse team is also planning on releasing new software called Glimpse NX which will be an easy program for editing images without the steep learning curve. I hope they will use GIMP as the backend but an easy to use guide front end.
As I mentioned previously, you should not install the Snap version if you are in ElementaryOS, even if it gets updated soon. That’s because ElementaryOS itself provides bad support for Snap. Also Linux mint blocks the installation of Snapd, the core software that manages Snap applications. So if you want the latest 0.2.0 version, you should better install via Flathub.
To install Glimpse 0.2.0 Flatpak, simply open the terminal and type
$ flatpak install flathub org.glimpse_editor.Glimpse
If you are on OpenSUSE TumbleWeed, there is an open build package for your distro here.
Glimpse is actually an important project. It reflects the fact of how versatile free software can be for the community. If you don’t like the name, fork it, and rebrand it. GIMP is seen as an offensive word for many countries and locals. But it is also widely known as an advanced program for over 20 years. There is a problem for sure, but this is not unsolvable thanks to the open-source. Glimpse team forked the GIMP project and rebranded it to solve the issue. While the first release was pretty much useless for those who wanted to replace GIMP with Glimpse because they forked older versions of GIMP. But with Glimpse 0.2.0 being based on GIMP 2.10.18, it is now the perfect replacement for GIMP 2.10 for anyone who needs it.