Image formats (was: Word Figure Captions - a new question)

Subject: Image formats (was: Word Figure Captions - a new question)
From: "McClare, Scott" <smcclare -at- neptec -dot- com>
To: "'TECHWR-L'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 8 Dec 1999 11:37:02 -0500

kimber_miller -at- acs-inc -dot- com [mailto:kimber_miller -at- acs-inc -dot- com] said:

> I don't know the method of screen capture that you're using. I do suggest
> whatever method you use, you insert the graphics as GIF or JPG files and
> bitmaps. Bitmaps will seriously inflate the size of the document.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Windows use its bitmap format
internally, i.e. in order to display any bitmap, it will uncompress it and
display it *as* a BMP? If so, it makes no difference what graphic format
you insert into a document, as it'll wind up pretty much the same size

Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Windows use its own internal format for
displaying bitmapped graphics? If so, it doesn't really matter whether you
use a GIF, JPEG, BMP, or any other format Word can import - when it displays
it, it all turns out the same size anyway. (Of course, if you merely
reference the graphics, then this isn't the case.)

I also would strongly recommend *against* using JPEGs in documents destined
for print. JPEGs use a lossy compression technique that will often manifest
little rectangular artifacts at the boundaries between colours. This is
especially noticeable if the JPEG has a lot of solid colours in it - and a
screen capture is usually nothing *but* large areas of solid colour. These
become more noticeable in JPEGs with higher compression ratios, and a JPEG
screen shot that doesn't show them is usually compressed so little it isn't
worth the effort!

On the other hand, a high-colour format such as TIFF, PNG, or Targa uses a
lossless compression technique that won't manifest these distortions (for
example, a PNG image compresses to roughly the size of a comparable GIF but
is capable of displaying true colour, as compared to the GIF's palette of
256 colours).

Take care,


Scott A. McClare - Technical Writer
Neptec Design Group
(613) 599-7603 x504
smcclare -at- neptec -dot- com

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