i'll try and explain what i'd like to be able to do and what i'm doing at the moment.
this all relates to the new cody logo but will become more of a problem when the new themed codies are designed as there will be more colours to incorporate into the gif palette. okay, 256 colours sounds like it's enough but it's too small when you are trying to shade things nicely.
currently i design the image in photoshop (or fireworks) using an unrestricted colour palette. i want to be able to start with a high quality image, with shading, and then save out as a gif that obviously has a reduced palette.
i'd like to be able to specify which colours i want to keep whilst viewing the gif preview. further, i'd like to be able to delete colours i think are unnecessary and maybe even put ones in that aren't already in the gif palette.
i can do this in a restrictive way using photoshop 'save for web' option but i'd like something that does things more in 'real time'. so, as an example, i may preview the gif and decide that i can lose some grey shades without the image being degraded too much but at the same time i can then introduce a few more shades of red that were originally in the high quality image.
so, i remove what i think won't be noticed and lock or bring back colours that i think will improve the image. sort of like the better jpeg image makers were you can lasso an area of the image and prevent that area from being compressed - i'd like the same thing with a gif image - lasso the area i think important and the palette adjusts itself to please me.