competition is good, it is a necessity. competition is good even for open source world. there were cries and hues, yes, after adobe released their CS version people started crying for features and
power from gimp too. adobe steadily distant itself from the open source competition and all gimp could do was to release small updates.
things changes, sometimes too fast. Gimp is changing too. they are getting ready with gimp 2.8 but they also getting ready for the world with the preparation for gimp 3.0
whats in store?
long answer short -GEGL. they have already started implementing GEGL, but its not fully integrated yet. after finishing 2.8 all focus will be on completely integrating GEGL with gimp thus gimp will truly have the power for high dynamic range colours. instead of rgb conversion cmyk conversion will be done resulting in more powerful and accurate editing.
with 2.8 gimp will be offered in gpl v3 license and hence paving the path for new tools.
if you were wondering why no new features were added? now you know.
krita was becoming a threat too with cleaner interface which is even better than photoshop, it has reached version 2.
there is also a rumor that 2.8 will sport single window system just like photoshop or krita. all i can say that its just a rumor. but who knows with v3.0 this may really come true. v3.0 promises lots of ui changes. lets hope for the best. you know, i would rather like an option for this multi window and single window switch. maybe a hide window button. or even better, a window rip feature a-la blender 2.50.
can they do it? gimp 3.0 will be a huge step just like blender 2.50. lets hope open source photo editor becomes powerful showing the world what open source can be.