A response to unexpected success…?

Wow. I was not expecting a post I wrote off-the-cuff on the spur of the moment to blow up like it did. I’m very grateful for all the feedback, and I’m glad I was apparently able to help a lot of people. It was surprising, but gratifying. So before I continue I just would like to say, thanks.
Edit: okay so apparently the supposed “mountain of feedback” was apparently like 90% spam…? Either that or I have an overzealous spam blocker… Anyway ignore the moratorium because apparently bots happened. The last part’s still true, though, so I am keeping this post up because that’s still helpful information.

I would also like to quickly say that this is not a software review site, but a variety blog (from reading some of the comments, I got the impression that some people might have mistaken it for one, and I do not want them to be in for a shock when I start talking about things like animation, cats, gaming, music, and the human condition), and while I quite like FOSS, I am not associated with any of it and am not an authority on the subject. I just want to make sure people know what they’re getting into. I aim to be informative in most things, but I generally talk about whatever I feel like talking about. This next post is going to be the last non-vocal synth software review in quite a while, and it’s one I’ve been planning for quite some time because I had such a pleasant experience with it.

Cheers, everyone.♥

My complicated and frustrating relationship with GIMP

GIMP, the GNU Image Manipulation Program, has a bit of a reputation among some for being…hard to use. It has a steep learning curve, and one of the most common searches regarding it is how to draw a straight line. This is justified by its supporters as “it’s not a drawing tool, it’s an image manipulation tool”, which… is actually a fair point. While it’s not great for drawing, it excels at editing existing images. That said, I had long wondered “why can’t it be both?” But that is not what I am talking about today. It took me a long time, but I’d finally started to get used to it. I could actually find the tool I wanted most of the time. And then, I opened the interface today to find…
it had been completely overhauled.

When this happened, I don’t know, but it suddenly went from being information overload and having a massive wall of tools to choose from, to a design that was, I think, a bit oversimplified. It took me a little while to realize that they had decided to group the tools in categories, with only one tool in the category displaying at a time, and the way to swap between them is… honestly a bit opaque. I am still trying to figure out how to switch between the pencil and the brush. Well, there is a way to do it using keyboard shortcuts (and honestly I can’t remember if that was there before), but my first instinct is still to use the mouse. They also moved the brush customization GUI from the left side to the right side, and the way the current tool being used appears seems to have been overhauled as well. The combination of the two completely threw me for a loop, and I ended up in the highly frustrating position of having to re-learn how to use the pencil tool. They also seem to have added a whole bunch of things to it that were not there before.

Once I got over the shock of having to relearn to use the pencil tool and calmed down (I had opened it to change a couple of pixels on something, and instead of just being able to do it and move on I had to figure out where the pencil was and how to resize it, and was frustrated that something so simple had become more complicated), I noticed some nice things about the change. While I am still getting used to swapping tools, I did notice that the menus seem to have been cleaned up and are easier to navigate, and they’ve either added some features or made them easier to find. It also seems to move more quickly than it did before. It also seems to be easier to swap the panel that a particular menu is on (once I tried swapping the pencil settings from the right to the left, I found I had no trouble). And the new features look like they could be pretty useful.

In conclusion, I feel it is a step in the right direction, but that a happy medium could be reached. Instead of the weird way tools are arranged, what about the ability to expand and contract the categories, so that switching between tools becomes simpler? That way it would avoid information overload but still not be overly-simplified. (Proper shape tools would also be nice, but I know that’s not gonna happen, what with it not being a drawing tool and all.)
My final judgement on it is: Eh, I could get used to this.

An update

So, I made my first post then seemingly disappeared off the face of the earth. Well, here’s an update.
I had a whole bunch of things lined up that I was wanting to do, including a post for Autism Acceptance Month (which is now completely over, so I may very well have to save that for next year), but unfortunately, all that fell by the wayside because I got really, really busy with school. I use a different laptop for my schoolwork, which is not connected to my Vivaldi account so I don’t get distracted when I should be working, meaning I’ve been away from my blog for extended periods, and when I did find time I found myself with a grade-A case of writer’s block. Ultimately I decided that I should just put it all aside until I was done, since my quest for a degree always comes first (even if I wish it didn’t sometimes).

I’ve got one final stretch, and then the semester is over. After that I hope to post at least semi-frequently. I might even have a post lined up that I did on my work computer. Here’s hoping I won’t have writer’s block this summer!

So there’s my update. I felt I owed any interested parties an explanation for what happened. I’m thankfully not dead, haven’t given up on this thing, but very busy with other things.

An introduction

So, I have a blog now. Most people in the world have no idea who I am, so that statement is not terribly impressive. Anyway, hi, I’m glaceRaven, and I like animation, video games, geek culture, vocal synths, and philosophy, among a myriad of other things. Welcome to my blog!
The title says it all, really. It’s my many, varied musings:
If something irks me, I’ll probably write about it.
If I thought of something interesting, I’ll probably write about it.
If I found something amusing, I’ll probably write about it.
I will generally try to avoid politics and religion (mostly because I try to keep my real life and my online life separate), but I make absolutely no promises, since I don’t make promises I can’t keep. Some things are important and need to be discussed, whether because of widespread misunderstanding or otherwise. Other things irk me to the degree that, well, see point 1 above. I will, however, do everything in my power to avoid polemics, hysterics, sophistry (faulty rhetoric), and angry-posting. My goal is to inform and reflect, not to attack.
So basically, I would write posts about how, say, Cancel Culture is re-skinned McCarthyism coming from the opposite side of the political spectrum (and I probably will at some point because it is), but I would not write posts about, for example, everyone being an idiot (which would be an example of angry-posting and is not true in the least).
I will also not be avoiding offhand references to my own faith (e.g. mentions of going to Mass, observing Lent, praying, God, etc.), because it’s a part of who I am and true compartmentalization is majorly unhealthy; proselytizing is not on the menu, and any discussion is based on my own experience and observation, meant to be informative and interesting.
Anyway, with that out of the way, I hope my blog is entertaining, informative, and a good read. Bye for now!