What does GIMP Stand for?

GIMP (which stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program according to AbbreviationFinder) is a program for editing digital images in bitmap form, both drawings and photographs. It is a free and free program. It is included in the GNU project and available under the GNU General Public License.

The first version of GIMP was initially developed on Unix systems and was specially designed for GNU / Linux. There are fully functional versions for Windows, for Mac OS X, and it is included in many GNU / Linux distributions. It has also been ported to other operating systems, making it the graphics manipulation program available on most operating systems. It can be considered as a robust, powerful and fast alternative to Photoshop for many uses, although it has not been developed as a clone of it and has a rather different interface.


The initiators of the development of GIMP in 1995 were students Spencer Kimball and Peter Mattis as a semester exercise at the University of Berkeley, in the student computer club. Currently a team of volunteers is in charge of the development of the program. GIMP originally meant “General Image Manipulation Program” (“General Image Manipulation Program”), but in 1997 was changed to the meaning ” GNU Image Manipulation Program” (“Program image manipulation GNU “). GIMP is an official part of the GNU Project.

GIMP is used to process graphics and digital photos. Typical uses include creating graphics and logos, resizing, cropping and modifying digital photos, modifying colors, combining images using a layering paradigm, removing or altering unwanted elements in images, or the conversion between different image formats.

You can also use the GIMP to create simple animated images, vector manipulation, advanced video editing. GIMP is also known for being perhaps the first great free application for non-professional or expert users. Products originating earlier, such as GCC, the Linux kernel, etc., were primarily programmers’ tools for programmers.

GIMP is considered by some to be a convincing demonstration that the Free Software development process can create applications that ordinary, non-advanced users can use productively. In this way, GIMP has paved the way for other projects such as KDE, GNOME, Mozilla Firefox, OpenOffice.org and other later applications.


GIMP was developed as a free tool for working with images and has become a free and effective alternative to Photoshop for a wide range of uses.

GIMP reads and writes most graphic file formats, including Jpg, Gif, Png, Pcx, Tiff, and Photoshop, as well as having its own file storage format, Xcf. It is also capable of importing Pdf files and also vector images in Svg format created, for example, with Inkscape.

Like Photoshop, it has layers, channels, paths, and different types of brushes that allow you to combine images in many different ways.

It has several selection tools (rectangular, spherical, manual lasso, magic wand, by color), smart scissors, painting tools such as brush, brush, airbrush, fill, textures, etc. It has tools to modify scale, inclination, deformation, perspective cloning or curing brush (to correct small defects). It also has text manipulation tools. It also has many tools or filters for manipulating the colors and the appearance of the images, such as focus and blur, elimination or addition of spots, shadows, color mapping, etc. It also has a menu with a catalog of effects and image treatments.

In addition to being interactive, GIMP allows the automation of many processes through macros or scripts. For this it includes a language called Scheme for this purpose. It also allows the use of other languages ​​such as Perl, Python, Tcl and (experimentally) Ruby for these tasks. In this way, it is possible to write sequences of operations and plugins for GIMP that can then be used repeatedly. It is also possible to produce images in a totally non-interactive way (for example, generate images for a web page on the fly using CGI scripts) and perform batch processing that changes color or converts images. For simpler automatable tasks, it is probably faster to use a package like ImageMagick, but GIMP has much more powerful features. GIMP plugins can ask the user to enter parameters in operations, be interactive, or not. There is an extensive catalog of user-created plugins that greatly complement GIMP’s functionality. These plugins are comparable to Firefox browser extensions.

GIMP uses GTK + as a graphic control library. In reality, GTK + was simply a part of GIMP at first, originating from replacing the commercial Motif library initially used in early versions of GIMP. GIMP and GTK + were originally designed for the X Window graphics system running on Unix-like operating systems. GTK + has subsequently been ported to Windows, OS / 2, Mac OS X, and SkyOS.

Minimum requirements for its operation

  • Processor: Pentium II
  • RAM memory: 128 MB
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows, GNU / Linux
  • Installation size: 99 MB



GIMPShop is a modification of GIMP with an interface (windows, position of the commands in the menus, terminology, etc.) to make it more similar to Adobe Photoshop. It is based on version 2.2. by GIMP.


Gimphoto is another modification of GIMP with an interface (windows, position of the commands in the menus, terminology, etc.) to make it more similar to Adobe Photoshop. Based on version 2.4.


Seashore is a program based on GIMP for Mac that uses natively interface Cocoa for OS X. This program is currently (December 2008) in version (0.1.9) and includes only a limited set of filters available in GIMP at the moment.

It currently has the basic elements of the GIMP: rectangular, elliptical, lasso selection tools; color tools with brush, brush, fill, text, eraser, color picker, gradients, blur, clone, zoom. It does not have advanced GIMP tools such as perspective cloning, scaling as a tool (although it can scale with its own menu), rotation, and other tools. It uses layers like GIMP, with the same overlap blending possibilities and sets of opacity and transparency between them. You do not yet have the ability to use paths and masks.

It has color management (including the possibility of using CMYK) much more integrated into Mac than GIMP, since Seashore communicates directly with Coloursync, while GIMP uses communication with the Operating System through the intermediate graphical window environment. X11. Seashore writes the files in the GIMP format, the Xcf, and also in Jpeg, Jpeg2000, Gif, Png and Tiff. It is capable of additionally reading Pdf, Ps files. It is faster and lighter than GIMP due to its greater integration into the operating system and its lower capabilities. Although there is a version in Spanish (and in other languages ​​in addition to the original in English), its main developer considers that the early stage of development in which it is found means that the translation still requires many changes. Seashore can be used for simple tasks that do not require advanced filters, and it is attractive to fans of the Mac user interface due to its good integration with it when they require, for example, the possibility of mixing different images through the use of layers.


CinePaint, formerly known as Film Gimp, is a modification of the GIMP that adds support for 16 bits of depth per color channel (48 bits per pixel), has a frame manager and other enhancements and is used in the film industry.