Monday, August 1, 2011

I like "Graphics Interchange Format" (GIF) images

3B Kyle Seager's swipe-tag too quick for Ump

Jeff Sullivan from Lookout Landing is making a habit of making .gif images out of clips from television baseball coverage. GIF images are a series of still graphic images, or 'bitmaps' that display at a set speed so they look like a video! I like them so much I've been adding them to my sidebar. In this fast paced world full of 15 second sound bites and the fleeting of the famous and infamous - GIF's are perfect.

GIF has it's limitations, it doesn't support super high quality photographic colour sets. But as far as I'm concerned, that's good - this isn't supposed to be the original, above for example, is a re-purposed artifact of something the gretaer culture created - it's a parody, a comment. It is an icon of the televised game a memory if you will - and there it plays for poor Kyle Seager, like a nightmare - over and over and over... (Or perhaps for the Ump more so.)

The GIF format was invented by Steve Wilhite in 1987 while he worked for CompuServe. All the relevant patents on the software have since expired.

File:Newtons cradle animation book 2.gif
(Animation of "Newton's Cradle" via Wikipedia - also included in a article about the GIF format

File:Rotating earth (large).gif
(Rotating_earth_(large).gif‎ (400 × 480 pixels, file size: 1.36 MB, MIME type: image/gif, looped, 44 frames, 4.0s) - via Wikipedia)
When you click "copy image" and download one of these "images" all the bitmaps are downloaded; and then they're yours, and then you can put them anywhere you want - just like you would add an image from your computer to a blog post. (Always credit the source - then we'll still be friends.)

You can make your own GIF images in a couple of different ways:

There are Online GIF Maker Programs, (Google Search Page) where you upload your images to their server and then a program produces the GIF according to several parameter you're able to set...

- or - can download the free open source GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) software package - which has a GIF production interface, for all your GIF-Y needs.

Here's a brief introduction to the software: "How to Make an Animated GIF Image with GIMP"
(from MakeUseOf website - one of those answers for everything advertising aggregation websites , but it's  about GNU software - I never go to these sites because they about money not enlightenment, but it is a popular take on the product - and well written and has good graphics.)

This post was cross posted at Michael Holloway's FilterBlogs.


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