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Grokking The Gimp
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9.1 Web Animations

A graphic tool often seen on Web pages is the ubiquitous, animated GIF.  This is an image file format that can contain a sequence of frames combining text, images, and timing information to create a flip-book-like movie. As you will see in this chapter animated GIFs are easy to create, edit, and view in the GIMP.

9.1.1 Using GIF Files for Animation

The GIMP can save animations to several different file formats, but when making animations for the Web, the choice is limited to GIFs. GIF stands for Graphics Interchange Format , and GIF format files support a number of features that are particularly useful for Web graphics.

First, GIF is an eight-bit-per-pixel format, which means that with careful planning a GIF can be almost always properly displayed on systems providing only eight bits of color (see Section  9.5). Second, GIFs allow for transparency, a feature not supported by JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group), the other principle file format for images  on the Web. Third, GIFs support interlacing which may be of interest for the transmission of images over low bandwidth networks. Finally, the GIF format supports layers and attached layer timing information. This last feature is the one exploited for GIF animations.

Grokking The Gimp
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