iPhix for Mac free for one whole day. Grab it while you can and prepare for the Friday giveaways!

Since we are going to start our TGIF competition very soon and we need as many competitors as possible iPhix for Mac will be free one entire day the 7th of June.
More information about the TGIF twitter competition will appear in a later blogpost, but we can already tell that you can win a 15$ iTunes gift card or comparable price with it each Friday.

In the meanwhile download and enjoy iPhix, show it to your friends and prepare your best pictures and filter picking skills for the competition.

36-image converter video tutorial for people who fail to convert

I’ve been getting a lot of complaints lately <sarcasm>always from nice people who don’t insult me or anything</sarcasm> that 36-image converter is hard to work with and that they can’t find any info on how to convert an image or even open one. So I created a tutorial on how to open images in 36-image converter and convert them. In the tutorial we’re going to convert a DNG raw camera image to PNG in 2 minutes.

A few remarks :
-The version used in the video is a development version of 36-image converter 4.7 Beta which hasn’t been released yet. So you won’t be able to filter filetypes in the open-dialog.
-In versions older than the newest alpha version of 36-image converter 4.7 you won’t be able to open and convert DNG or other raw filetypes. You can download 36-image converter 4.7 here>
-My voice is no opera baritone so I still suggest reading the help file instead of listen to me for 2 whole minutes

I hope everything is clear now and that I don’t have to hear another. “It can’t convert images, this is stupid!” in my whole life.

36-image converter downloaded 100.000 times on CNET

We know that all together from various sources 36-image converter is downloaded about 600.000 times, but we only take one result as official and untampered with measuring tool, CNET. And this night, the 100.000th download of 36-image converter was confirmed.

36-image converter is around since februari 2006 and has been listed on CNET since July 2006, it took off quite fast quickly bringing it to 20.000 downloads and to one of our most downloaded applications. Later in 2007 we started seeing the potential of 36-image converter and we started building other more advanced tools and version, thus even increasing the amount of downloads even more. In 2008 came 36-image converter 4.4 “Ninja” and this has put us on the map as the most popular real image converter and one of the top 20 most popular image editing tools in the world. And today, we have 100.000 official downloads.

I can only say one more thing : Bring in the 1.000.000!

36-image express 2.0, Project Dragonfly continues…

We are now working on 36-image converter 4.7 but we should begin looking towards the future, which is 36-image express (36Ix). As for now 36Ix can only open and save images, but this will change.

In 36Ix 2.0 we will alter the interface to house a bunch of new features, 1 of the most important features in 36Ix 2.0 will be the layer support. We will try to integrate layer support a well as possible with a focus on usability and ease of use.

Another feature of 36Ix 2.0 will be filters, because filters are now handled by the Core Image Processing Unit instead of the 36-image converter executable, we can easily add support for the same filters to 36-image express. The same for the input and output filetypes.

As a final point we will add some transformations (resize, crop, rotate) and save to web functionality and the first step towards the future is finished. But first we have to finish 36IC 4.7 of course and this may still take months, but the good news is that most of the work we do for 36IC can be reused in 36-image express, thus creating a more functional, lighter and more beautiful version of 36-image converter.

The next step v2.5 will add brushes, layer effects, vector drawing, fill tools, photo altering tools and when this step is completed we will probably be at a point where we overpower GIMP, thus having a +-10Mb application which supports layers, is easy to use and looks good, is light and supports +-60 input filetypes and +-30 output filetypes. We might even reach our goal to develop the first freeware application which can compete with Photoshop. But this is something we will see in the future.

36-image converter and large images

As most 36IC users already know, 36-image converter can’t edit images bigger than the screen resolution minus 20 pixels, eg. 1.400×830 = max. size of 1.380×810 pixels. Many people have been wanting a fix for this problem, but there isn’t any except for 36-image express which allows conversion of bigger images, but isn’t as advanced as 36IC. So when will it be fixed?

In our next version (4.7) coming in the fall of this year, we will include tools to batch convert/resize/rename images of any size. This will be the first step. In version 5.0 this issue will be resolved completely and you will also be able to edit/convert and save images in the default editor. But this won’t happen anytime soon.

The current editor of 36-image converter is too complicated to support images bigger than the screen resolution, the entire application has to be rewritten. That’s why we created 36-image express, 36Ix is build to support large images and to be much lighter. But at the moment 36Ix is still lacking a lot of features and is actually a development version of 36-image converter 5.0 which is publicly being tested and incrementally being improved.

So first we have to complete 36IC 4.7, then we have to update 36Ix with the new CIPU conversion engine from 36IC and make it more stable, then we can begin improving 36Ix step by step to support all functions of the current 36-image converter and to support advanced image editing features like editable layers. Then 36-image converter 5.0 will be build on top of 36-image express. So we can proceed the 36IC development with the same care we used for developing 36Ix.

So in a while 36-image converter will support large surfaces, but it will not be for 2009. Even we are waiting for a stable core to continue the development of 36-image converter. But as always when we fix the size issue, the 36IC users will find something new to rant about on CNET, that’s why all coming versions of 36-image converter and 36-image express will have the Reasonable Feedback Agreement in the EULA, like 36Ix does. In this way we can at least protect all future version of 36IC against idiotic comments and even sue the people who do.

36-image converter 4.7 coming to you as alpha-nightly build+Project CoreFusion

36-image converter 4.7 has come a long way yet. It can already open raw filetypes, has a faster effects engine, improved in and output support and is lighter. So many of our main goals have been accomplished. We see people who are looking for a decent way to convert, say NRW to JPEG and we are looking for people to test 36IC 4.7 so everything functions well at it’s release. Therefore 36-image converter 4.7 Alpha 1 Build 140 will be made available somewhere in the coming month. This version will function fine for testing purposes and use of some core functionalities, but it is not meant to be used on production machines or for daily use. 36IC 4.7 Alpha 1 is stable, but still lacks a lot of core functionality.

So to summarize :
Name :  36-image converter
Version : 4.7.1.140a
Development state : Alpha 1
Release date : 25th August ’09
Last stable version : 4.6.198
Codename : Tiger Chameleon
Changes :
-Write support for various new filetypes
-Read support for various new filetypes
-Source included for some libraries
-New conversion engine (CIPU)
-Support for RAW filetypes of more than 300 cameras
-Faster filters + new filter added
-Various tweaks and bugfixes to the interface and engine

We also have some other great news. Since our CIPU (CoreImageProcessingUnit) is finished we took some time to combine this technology with another great graphics library, CoreGraphics on Max OSX and iPhone OS. This project called CoreFusion delivered an iPhone App which brings the image editing capabilities of CIPU to the iPhone. This primitive version of 36 for the iPhone will be able to perform basic image editing functions and feature a bunch of filters and masks also found in 36-image converter. Everybody should keep in mind that this v1.0 is a basic version and that we are already working on a giant expansion of this app’s capabilities. The name will be announced together with some more information when it is approved by Apple. We can already announce the price which will be $0.99 or €0.79.

36-image converter 4.7 biggest 36IC release ever with 108 improvements so far

36-image converter 4.7 “Tiger Chameleon” will be the 36-image converter version with the highest amount of improvements and new features to the previous one. This means that it beats v4.4 “Ninja” in increased functionality.

36-image converter 4.4  “Ninja” release 1, released last year only had 74 improvements and the coming 36-image converter 4.7 “Tiger Chameleon” release 1 will have over 107 new features if we stick to all our plans.  Of course for most users, the change will not be this dramatic since most improvements happen far away from the main 36-image converter executable in the image processing unit, where in “Ninja” the entire main executable was rebuild.  So this gives a bit of a wrong view to this comparison. So you have to decide yourself which update is the most valuable one.

You could already see an overview of all new coming features in one of the previous posts, but now we have also added usability improving features like keyboard shortcuts and mouse gestures. Mouse gestures is something which has never been done before in an image editing application.

Let’s give you another overview of all 108 coming improvements :

-Improved performance : By removing old parts of the engine, we increased performance and reduced memory load. (2 improvements)

New conversion engine (Core Image Processing Unit v0.3.1) : This improvement speeds up conversions, makes all existing write support more reliable, adds write support for TIF, TIFF, TGA, Portable bitmaps (normal, raw and ascii), RLE, 256-colors and 16-bits bitmaps, ICB and read support for jpeg2000 and 33 raw image filetypes of 300 digital camera’s. It also provides more stable PII encryption/decryption and improves the speed of all existing and coming filters tremendously. (61 improvements)

New selection and layer features : The amount of possibilities added to the selection menu will dramatically increase. You will be able to cut out or copy a selection and save it to a file or create a layer with it and apply filters or transformations upon it. You will also be more free in the transformation of your selection, you will be able to contract or expand selections to all directions and set the size or location for the selected area. There will also be minor tweaks to the selection controls and an update of the current object insertion (layer) function.  (15 improvements)

New filters : With 36-image converter 4.7 come a whole bunch of new faster filters : Monochrome, Equalize, Red, Blue and Green. You will also be able to encrypt and decrypt images with a password using a filter. (7 improvements)

New improved settings panel, Extension Manager and DashBoard : All extra tools will be renewed and improved, they will get improved interfaces, the DashBoard and its channels will be adapted, the Extension Manager will enable you to choose an icon for 36IC files and the Settings Panel will be adapted to conform to the new functions. (5 improvements)

Batch and Context menu conversion : 36IC 4.7 is the first version of 36-image converter to support Batch and Context menu conversion. You will be able to directly use the CIPU to convert an amount of filetypes to all filetypes supported by 36IC. This will happen in batch and with technology taken from Blastgen to enable thousands of files to be converted, resized or renamed in a matter of seconds. (6 improvements)

-Usability improvements : In 36-image converter 4.7, image editing never was easier. You will be able to use keyboard shortcuts and adjustable mouse gestures for a whole lot of standard operations. Also the new Mirage theme will also be applied to the selection and color squares to improve visibility. When you open a submenu for the first time,  an animated tutorial will pop up to get people used to 36IC in no time. (4 improvements)

The usual bunch of tweaks and fixes : As a surplus to all new functions and improved features some things were tweaked and fixed as well. 36IC 4.7 has new icons, a new splash screen, a new help file and finally fixes the resize inaccuracy bug. There have also been minor tweaks to the interface to the quality of the interface. (8 improvements)

As you can see, 36-image converter 4.7 will have a whole bunch of new features, how many will survive it to the finish is something we will see in August.