So the new GIMP 2.8 release is currently in the Release Candidate stage, the final release may come any time now (wild guess: the Libre Graphics Meeting conference is taking place in a couple of weeks and it will bring together a number of its developers), previews and reviews are starting to appear, is a big deal since this release is about 1.5 years late - it was expected since December 2010 but got delayed again and again - probably it was not sexy enough for the developers, who are excited about the next release, 2.10, which is going to deliver more meaty stuff.
Major user interface change
What make titles for this release is the big interface change (I wrote about it before) which introduced optionally (not yet as default) a Single-Window Mode (activate it in the "Windows" menu). From what I see, newbies will like it, finding it less scary (my girlfriend is a good example, she saw me preparing the article, I showed her the differences, she "definitely" liked the single-window mode - she does photo editing, but with simpler apps, no GIMP, no Photoshop).
Rest ehre