I checked out the free beta of Iris, which promises to be the future of image editing on the Mac platform. According to the site:
Designed from the ground up specifically for Mac users, Iris provides a powerful, intuitive, and easy-to-use solution for all your photo editing needs.
Programmed to perform with a unique and elegant one-window interface, Iris renders confusing multiple palettes obsolete.
It certainly delivers on being easy-to-use and elegant, however I didn’t feel it being particularly fast even though it’s an only 4MB download.
I like 3 things in particular about Iris that Adobe developers should consider integrating into Photoshop.
There is a neat documents dock on the bottom of the screen that allows for quick switch between open documents.
It also features a useful little zoom button that switches between common states and an iPhoto style slider that helps find you the correct magnification easily.
Under the File menupoint there is a New from Clipboard option that simplifies this frequent task.
While I don’t think the application is ready to replace Photoshop, it’s going to be a great tool for those who can’t justify the cost of a professional image editing application.