Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

The Art of the Animated GIF

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the high-low-and-animated-art dept.

Graphics 129

theodp writes "Some artists work in oils, some in pastels, some in acrylics. Photographer Jamie Beck and motion graphics artist Kevin Burg? Their medium of choice is animated GIFs. 'We wanted to tell more of a story than a single still frame photograph but didn't want the high maintenance aspect of a video,' said the two of their unusual collaboration. Needless to say, these are not your father's GeoCities 'Under Construction' GIFs — it can take several hours of manual editing for Beck and Burg to breathe the whisper of life into each image."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered


Geocities (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35926658)

My eyes still hurt after 15 years, but how funny it was to learn HTML that way!

Uhm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35926660)

Can't actually see most of the page. Gawker apparently disagrees with Firefox.

Re:Uhm.. (0)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926668)

oblig "it works fine for me"

Re:Uhm.. (1)

definate (876684) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926814)

At which point you then quote your OS, Architecture, Version, and Plugins, else the "oblig" hasn't really been satisfied.

Instead you've just added more uncertainty... though perhaps elaborate troll is elaborate... hrmmm.

Re:Uhm.. (1)

asdf7890 (1518587) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927710)

Well, Mr Nonymous didn't specify any of that information either, so it wouldn't serve any use for comparative purposes.

Re:Uhm.. (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928864)

For me: The images are hosted on a site that is blocked by my workplace so I have:

...animated creations that are "something more than a photo but less than a video."

Here's one of my favorites:

Warning! Access to this site has violated...

The pair was inspired... each image.

Warning! Access to this site has violated...


Re:Uhm.. (3, Insightful)

no known priors (1948918) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926712)

I think it's more that Gawker uses a moronic JavaScript method of making pages, with no non-JavaScript fallback. I use NoScript, therefore, I'm not going to see the article. That's fine, as I'm sure that someone else will post all the interesting bits in the discussion thread.

I really wanted to see those animated gifs that take ages to make though. They must be awesome. But not enough to potentially open up my browser to an attack. If Gawker are too incompetent to make a non-JavaScript fallback,I don't thin they'd be able to protect themselves against someone taking over their site and inserting malicious JavaScript in it...

(Also, MNG [wikipedia.org] and APNG [wikipedia.org], neither of which has any real support. Have the GIF patents expired yet?)

Re:Uhm.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35926790)

You get the non-javascript fallback by using _escaped_fragment_ [gawker.com]. Unfortunately half of the page is hidden behind a floating window that doesn't have a close button. :/

Re:Uhm.. (4, Informative)

no known priors (1948918) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926806)

Apparently I'm not the only one who dislikes the design. from here [giraffeforum.com]:

When Gawker Media launched a big redesign in February 2011, its traffic halved. That can happen because even when you do good things, people don’t like change. It can take them a while to adapt to the new environment. So, assuming for a moment the Gawker redesign was a good thing, have things picked up again?

“Turns out, according to Gawker’s public statistics, things are much, much worse than was originally reported,” The Atlantic Online states. “Yes, the redesign cut traffic in half almost instantly, but instead of coming back, even more readers left the site behind.”

Re:Uhm.. (1)

Chemisor (97276) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928720)

I blame W3C, who in their small minds failed to create any decent method of creating a div layout with multiple equal height columns, which is what every damn site wants to do.

Re:Uhm.. (5, Informative)

ndogg (158021) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926808)

Skip Gawker. Go to their website directly:

http://fromme-toyou.tumblr.com/tagged/cinemagraph [tumblr.com]

And yes, they are truly beautiful animations.

Re:go to their website directly (5, Insightful)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927934)

Actually, you just mentioned one of the key problems with Web 2.0: "Why bother to link the site of an unknown artist who might be able to use the traffic, when you can link an intermediary aggregator first?"

Re:go to their website directly (2)

E IS mC(Square) (721736) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928354)

Well said. It seems Web2.0 has come with Stupidity factor without which it does not work.

And, I am anyway not clicking on ANY gawker link. They do not deserve any traffic whatsoever, especially not from /..

Re:Uhm.. (1)

d6 (1944790) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927080)

>> too incompetent to make a non-JavaScript fallback

What you said.

At least fall through to a no-script page that tells me my browser sucks instead of failing to render. If they can't understand graceful degradation, they should get out of the business.

Re:Uhm.. (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927316)

too incompetent to make a decent functional website


Seriously who told them sticking some big ass bar with NO close button was a good idea? because I'd like some of what they are smoking. No wonder their traffic was cut in half and is falling like a stone, 20 seconds on that site and I was "Run away! Run away!" from the horror. Funny that this happens on a discussion of GIFs, as I thought that kind of lame ass web design went out with Geocities and the Timecube guy.

As for TFA, while there are some artistic ones on that site IMHO they like playing with wind too much. The guy reading his paper in the middle of a busy park was cool though. BTW how long is GIF still under patent anyway? Surely it has to be getting close to PD by now? Let us just hope that once it is PD it doesn't become "popular" like it did during the days of Geocities. Between the fifty million bouncing GIFs and the blink tags it was like web design by a committee of color blind drunks.

Of course seeing some of the flash nightmares on the web I can say they have learned to slam a CPU with modern tech just as well as they did during Geocities with blinks, GIFs, and Comet Cursors. Give them credit folks, nobody could slam the living hell out of a CPU like the Geocities "artists" and their websites from hell. The GIF patent mess was one of the few times I was happy about patents . I was like "Go GIFs...and take the blink tag with you!". Maybe it was just me, but I found a web free of GIFs to be a nicer place to be.

Re:Uhm.. (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927340)

Maybe there are more patents lurking around animated GIFs, but the main LZW patent that Unisys was using to scare people away from GIF in the 1990's expired years ago [wikipedia.org].

Re:Uhm.. (1)

smelch (1988698) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928230)

GIFs would be downright tasteful these days. The reason GIFs seemed so terrible in the day is because of general crappy design. Flash is animated, these GIFs are clearly more tasteful than most flash, and GIFs can only animate. They can't spew sound or rape your computer. Our ability to design has grown up a lot since geocities and has nothing to do with the specific implementation of animation.

Re:Uhm.. (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928378)

I think it's more that Gawker uses a moronic

Don't waste your time at the scummy Gawker site, click straight through to the artists pages. There's even more amazing stuff there. Some of it very subtle, very beautiful.

I'm pretty impressed with these, though I was pretty impressed with the dancing baby. too, so I'm probably half a moron.

Not exactly animated GIFs, but can't miss this: (5, Interesting)

goruka (1721094) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926684)

Re:Not exactly animated GIFs, but can't miss this: (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927172)

Or you could try this. [youtube.com]

Re:Not exactly animated GIFs, but can't miss this: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927894)

wow. Some people are way too talented

Re:Not exactly animated GIFs, but can't miss this: (1)

DamienRBlack (1165691) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928468)

That is way cooler than TFA, make sure you open up "options" and get a look at the changing palette.

not loading (3, Interesting)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926698)

The images aren't loading on the page, so here is the original blog with more images: right here [tumblr.com]. And I would also say one of the nicest looking web page designs I've ever seen.

Re:not loading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927032)

Not only are the images not loading on the Gawker site, but there is a HUGE honking pop-up window right in the middle of the screen that obscures everything and cannot be removed. The popup has "Home", "Popular" and "Search" buttons, but no "Close" button!

Is this supposed to be some Slashvertisement/business deal between Gawker and Slashdot? I can't understand any reason why such a shitty Website would be front page news on Slashdot except for the fact that there might be some business deals going on between the two companies.

The tumblr site that you reference is MUCH better. Where are the Editors?

Re:not loading (3, Insightful)

x*yy*x (2058140) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927164)

It's your own fault for using plugins that break compatibility. Frankly I don't think Gawker even cares about you, since they're ad run site like most of the internet and rather just have the visitors that are worth something to them.

Re:not loading (1)

Kitsune Inari (1801214) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927352)

You forgot one small detail: even with javascript turned on, the Gawker page still has a seriously über-fucked up design that will scare all visitors away, which means nobody will watch their ads more than once.

Re:not loading (2)

Anrego (830717) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927888)

Normally I'd agree with you.. whining that a site doesn't work with noscript is pointless because as you said, once you use something like that you are out of the demographic most for-profit sites care about.

However in this case, Gawker really does have a screwed up web design.. and their public stats have shown that not only did their traffic practically get cut in half when they rolled out the new design... but their traffic has continued to decline.

Re:not loading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927416)

That is what plugins like firebug are made for, select the damn div and delete it from the DOM.

Re:not loading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35928620)

Between the EasyList and EasyPrivacy filter subscriptions, the page seems to work okay for me.

Re:not loading (2)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927772)

thanks to the proper images not loading on gawker, i thought the pepsi throwback ad was the artwork for a moment, and didn't think they qualified as art the way the article was describing.

APNG/MNG (4, Interesting)

tomstockmail (2056752) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926700)

We need to start utilizing APNG or MNG. Firefox does support APNG, most Webkit browsers do not sadly. APNG has the advantage of displaying the first frame in any PNG capable program. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/APNG [wikipedia.org] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MNG [wikipedia.org]


jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926768)

APNG is a nice format. Must say an animated version of OpenEXR would be fun too.


antimatter15 (1261618) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927040)

I think a better idea would just to allow embedding theora, webm or mp4 video clips as img sources. While APNGs are pretty cool in that they're lossless and support transparency, it still suffers from the same fundamental problem as animated gifs which is that there's no interframe compression, leading to insanely large files for anything but the shortest throbber icon loop (which should probably better be done with css transitions anyway). HTML already has some tag weirdness with the fact audio is technically equivalent to video, making img join the party wouldn't be bad and it'll certainly save lots of bandwidth and improve visual quality for those memes.


x*yy*x (2058140) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927176)

Talk about missing the point here. The purpose of those animations isn't to make them most beautiful you can with video editing and all that shit, but make them the most beautiful you can given the limits of .gif.

I would love to see this conversation in some art gallery, where a geek starts lecturing everyone how mona lisa would be much better if it was filmed in 1080p and would include sound and music. And then he would go on and start jabbing how the DRM in mona lisa and the art gallery guards ruins the experience as you cant just walk away with it and put a linux on it.


Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927216)

You're the one missing the point. You can put the same limits on a PNG, but it'd still take up less space and render much faster. GIF is an outdated technology and there is no reason to use it over APNG (as a whole). I actually convert all of my GIFs to PNG, and they take up about half the space and render much more efficiently.


Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927448)

Actually, the Mona Lisa DRM (thick glass pane, no standing close) does ruin the experience.

Re:APNG/MNG (5, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927588)

And, in common with most DRM forms, it means that you get a better experience with a pirated version. If you want to enjoy the Mona Lisa, go and look at a decent quality copy - to see the original, you queue for ages in a hot room, then get a few seconds to look at it through glass that's so thick that you can barely make out the detail before being moved on so that the next people in the queue can see it. Look at a decent copy, and you can spend as long as you like and can easily move from a place where you can see the entire picture to a close view of individual portions.


Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927092)

Amen. I don't particularly care which format it is; can we please just get some format for animations that isn't patented, supports better than 8-bit color, and works in a majority of web browsers?

Wicked is all I can say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35926726)

Wow I absolutely love these!

If we don't, remember me. (5, Interesting)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926744)

These [tumblr.com] are some of the best animated gifs I've ever seen.

Re:If we don't, remember me. (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926832)

Should have included more description: they're small sections of great films, some of which are silly and loopy, some are subtle and creepy.

Re:If we don't, remember me. (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926904)

I found quite many of them too loopy to make them all that awesome :/ There were a few that were really good, though. Especially the creepy ones.

Re:If we don't, remember me. (3, Interesting)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927136)

Yeah, I like the ones where very little is moving except maybe someone's eyes or hair, or their breathing. This one [tumblr.com] is one of my faves.

Re:If we don't, remember me. (1)

d6 (1944790) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927118)

I wish i could mod you up. some of them are meh, some are very good. Worth a look

Why not use SVG (2)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926754)

From the Article

So why did Beck and Burg choose the GIF format, rather than something more flexible like Flash? After all, it doesn't take more than a couple of these gorgeous pics to slow most browsers to a crawl. "The format has interesting capabilities as well as some severe limitations which are very influential in the visual style of our images," say the pair. "GIF is very basic, highly linkable through outlets such as Tumblr, and integrated into the web. Flash certainly has more capabilities but since our images are at their heart a traditional photograph, a format like .gif makes the most sense."

I know its not fully supported across all browsers yet but the format would be even more integrated into the current web. I don’t think GIFs deserve to be called the "Jazz of the Internet"[article]. I was hoping bad GIFs were something from last decade, that stayed there.

Most work well in Firefox 4
http://svg-wow.org/ [svg-wow.org]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SVG_animation [wikipedia.org]

PS the pics are quite good but they promote GIF when it should die

Re:Why not use SVG (2)

kevinmenzel (1403457) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927024)

SVG is vector animation, no? Wouldn't it be absolutely ridiculously awful at something like replacing this style of animated gif? Surely, what you SHOULD be advocating is something like APNG?

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927082)

There is support for raster graphics according to wikipedia. PNGs would be average for the kind of images they were using.
Since you use the SVG suffix you can use jpeg 2000 or WebP and maybe kill another solid and useful but now obsolete standard.
Plus APNG is only supported by Gecko and Presto. SVG will be supported by all modern browsers (though IE will lag as far behind as possible to troll the standard I expect).

Re:Why not use SVG (2, Informative)

antimatter15 (1261618) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927060)

No, SVG is for vector graphics and can't encode a photograph (losslessly anyway with any decent speed) as a SVG document. Plus, the file size would be huge. There's lots of things SVG would be great for, stick figure animations and throbbers. But not this.

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927154)

Thought it may cause it to be DOA, some people want SVG to include the 'kitchen sink'.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scalable_Vector_Graphics#Compression [wikipedia.org] .svgz (.svg.gz) will help with file size.
Scroll down or search for raster you can load the image and then draw instances of it. According to the link in GP these can used for animations. I think all raster graphics supported by the browsers would be able to use as well, resulting in terrible performance currently.

Re:Why not use SVG (2)

Jimbookis (517778) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927076)

Well, that's great. The demos on SVG-WOW make my i7 break out into TurboBoost mode. So I can look forward to crappy 1996 era slowness on web pages again in the future. At least we'll know what to blame global warming on in the future.

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927126)

I noticed that too it is a major draw back. They may need a JIT complier SVG is written in XML or to use more efficient animation methods. Im sure it can be fixed or the standard will die.

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927600)

What browser are you using? I played with SVG a while ago, and found that SMIL animations were pretty smooth in Safari with quite a low CPU load, but caused FireFox to spike my CPU to 100% and still only manage about 5 fps. Oh, and half of the things that I tried didn't work at all in FireFox. That was 3.x, so they may have better support now, but I doubt that they've managed to add both features and performance.

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927236)

What do you suggest they use to make these putative animated SVGs? It's not like Photoshop can poop out an animated SVG; all the examples you point to seem to be chunks of Javascript that dick around inside an SVG rather than something that can be put together by a non-programmer.

Plus, as you say: "I know it's not fully supported across all browsers". Why should they limit their audience by encapsulating a sequence of bitmaps in a vector container that won't work on all browsers when there's animgif code that's been working for up to twenty years in every browser out there?

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927690)

While photoshop can't it appears illustrator with Ikivo Animator can. Layering raster images in sequence would be not hard to code relative to making it look decent.

Must be close to 50 percent can view it now and there is google frame for the rest. But all Macs have the required support and the under 40s on their own laptop might run either an alternative or (and) better browser.

I think you are right, animated SVG is still 1 to 3 years off being feasible on the web.

Re:Why not use SVG (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928706)

I have nothing against SVG or animated SVG... I think that the SVG format is a fantastic one, but I am curious why you would be advocating it over PNG or APNG when it comes to things like photographs. APNG support may not be available on all browsers yet, but it's getting there.

There is room on the web for more than one graphics format... different tools for different jobs, and all that. SVG is ideal for any images where the steps to draw the image are easier to describe than the rendered image itself, but not photographs, where breaking it down into SVG would generally amount to nothing more than encoding the photographic image inside of SVG, where you may as well just use the photograph image format.

3D Animated GIFs - Another thing to try (4, Interesting)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926758)

I've always liked these wiggling 3D animated gifs [well.com].

Re:3D Animated GIFs - Another thing to try (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35928294)

NSFW image there, careful...

Re:3D Animated GIFs - Another thing to try (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35928568)

I am sure the calculation of the images is impressive but those have to be the most annoying images I have ever seen. This is why we have to be careful of gifs, to avoid people doing things like this.

These are the kind of devs I want to bitchslap (2)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926776)

"Shit, I'm running a quad-core with 8 gigs of RAM and a T-1, with only one tab in a single browser window open, isn't everyone??"

And while you're at it, throw in a lot of JavaScript with loops and poll the server every 9 seconds to see if anything new has been put up on the server. And pull in lots of include scripts from your advertisers doing the same sort of crap. You know, sites like Huffington Post, or, errr, Slashdot....

Re:These are the kind of devs I want to bitchslap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35926792)

For serious. Gawker's new layout is completely non-functional in FF with NoScript. Even after repeatedly temporarily allowing all this page.

Re:These are the kind of devs I want to bitchslap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927382)

Indeed. I just gave up and found the link to the original source in the slashdot comments.

Re:These are the kind of devs I want to bitchslap (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927906)

I'm surprised so many people here read Gawker. When I think of Gawker, I think of all the AOL "People Magazine" style websites full of meaningless crap not of interest to anyone over twelve. Or with a penis. Granted, they're not exactly *that*. But come on. They're awfully close.

I used to be big on this (1)

atari2600a (1892574) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926812)

Back when I was in highschool I wasted all my time in Video Production class on YTMND. Luckily most of Adobe's products (including After Effects) exported to GIF's so I could essentially throw together a top-notch YTMND in mere minutes. Anyone young/old enough to remember Pokesex? After effects! :P

Wake me up for animated pngs... (1, Interesting)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926830)

Zzz...animated gifs...zzz...1997...zzz...256 colors...zzzzzzz....

Please. Wake me up when we've invented animated PNGs.

Re:Wake me up for animated pngs... (3, Informative)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926896)

Despite what many people believe, GIFs aren't limited to 256 colors [ipal.org]. Although you would have realized that if you'd actually read the story. It may be another 10 years before animated PNGs are universally supported [wikipedia.org].

They are effectively though (3, Informative)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927400)

That page you sent people to is a good example why. the 32k GIF renders extremely slowly on both FF4 and IE9. It goes one block at a time. Also, when I looked at the properties of it in FF, it only showed the first block, and then proceeded to do so on the page, even after a reload. Not the kind of thing you want on your webpage.

Also there's the fact that precious little saves them. The reason is that the GIF format does actually NOT support more than 8-bits per pixel. What they are doing to make those high colour GIFs is messing with animation. You make a non-looping animation that doesn't render the whole image area, but rather tiles. Fine but:

1) It is a rather hacked way of doing things.
2) It is slow in most browsers (as I pointed out).
3) It defeats any hope of having an animated GIF since it is using animation.

For all practical purposes, GIFs are limited to 256 colours. In the case of animations you get 256 per frame, and the frames don't have to be the same though some programs may not support that correctly.

You can overlap the delta images (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927648)


Re:They are effectively though (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928290)

3) It defeats any hope of having an animated GIF since it is using animation.

Why would that be true? You have delays only between animation frames, and no delay between parts-of-image frames. The only problem then is the speed.

Re:Wake me up for animated pngs... (1)

Chelloveck (14643) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928732)

Despite what many people believe, GIFs aren't limited to 256 colors.

Which is interesting but irrelevant, since these images (the ones I've looked at closely, anyway) each use just one colormap. Or at least, each frame in the animation uses the same colormap.

I'm actually more impressed that he managed to reduce photos to 256 colors and still have them look good than I am by the animation.

Re:Wake me up for animated pngs... (3, Insightful)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926942)


What does the age of the technique have to do with anything? Hell, wheels were invented and used thousands of years ago and they're still in use even today.

zzz...256 colors...zzzzzzz....

Limitations in color representation again doesn't really say anything negative. Those GIFs look just great, and it tells about the skills of those who created them that you cannot spot any definite miscolourings in any of those images.

Please. Wake me up when we've invented animated PNGs.

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/APNG [wikimedia.org]

Re:Wake me up for animated pngs... (1)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927142)

Based on the rate at which different Indo-European words change, scholars now place the age of the world "wheel" (along with the words "horse", "chariot" and "axle") at around 5,000 BCE. In other words, it's not just wheels that have survived, but the entire specification of land vehicles. So, yeah, I'd have to agree specs can hang around a very, very long time.

Not fond of the GIF format, myself, but for limited-pallet lossless bitmapped images, they're certainly the best out there. In some ways, TARGA is better. In fact, it would be trivial to extend TARGA to any number of bits per colour plane you liked. However, TARGA is (a) not really used much, (b) not used in animated images at all, and (c) not really compessible at the colour-plane level, you'd need to squash the whole file or nothing.

Re:Wake me up for animated pngs... (1)

excelsior_gr (969383) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927604)

Well, you re right in all points. And that is why it makes it even more interesting for us to learn why the artist of the article chose the GIF format instead of the APNG format.

F-ing Hate animated gif (1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927146)

I hate the animated gif format because it's so often abused to make shitty, grainy silent versions of clips that could just be put on youtube or elsewhere - and probably take 5x of the bandwidth a proper format would have taken. Idk why people do that other than they lack basic video editing skills.

Re:Wake me up for animated pngs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927358)

Better wake up: https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Mng

APNG is still my fav. (4, Informative)

Dayofswords (1548243) | more than 2 years ago | (#35926848)

lossless + animation = movie-like images

Re:APNG is still my fav. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35928228)

APNG is a nice fuckup from Mozilla. They had MNG support, they removed it in 2003 because it was deemed too complex and not widely used (the usual chicken and egg problem). Then they decided they were going to create a non standard format based upon PNG and added it in 2008.

The problem is that showing the first frame of the animation if the animation is not supported by the reading application is plain stupid, people just use GIF instead. And APNGs, just like GIFs, need to be opened first if you want to read what would be metadata in MNG, which is the reason why the "format drop" wasn't accepted by the libpng team.

Additionally, you do realize how heavy an APNG would be without lossless images, nested loops and sprite based animations, don't you? MNG supports all of these and at least GIF forces people to use colour palettes.

The end result? The same chicken and egg problem, nobody uses APNG, not even rebranded Mozilla applications in Debian. One would have to support either patched libpng or both libpng and patched stuff from Mozila. Nice job, really.

The lesson to be learnt? When you think you know better and force the adoption of a non standard format, like it or not you're behaving like Microsoft. And with 30% of market share behaving like a monopoly doesn't work well, especially when the format is questionable.

The history of the animated gif (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927064)

Let me save you some time.


Re:The history of the animated gif (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35928096)

F- redirects to meatspin.com, would not click again.

Re:The history of the animated gif (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35928306)

In all fairness, it is an animated gif.

Those were the kbs... (1)

Dreth (1885712) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927110)

I remember exporting individual frames of animated GIFs, correct/add something to, or just reverse it, put it back together and use it on another crappy Geocities website.

Oh, and the "Awards"! Apparently clicking links through images was a difficult task back then. I gotta admit, I have a little corner in my heart for the god damned MIDI files.

Well this is a new low. (-1, Offtopic)

juuri (7678) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927260)

Good fucking job slashdot, could you seriously get any worse? YES.

Linking to Gawker? After all the negative stories here about their thieving? Lack of ethics? And holy fuck what an abomination of web design?

Does anyone at slashdot really care at all anymore? It's been fashionable to say the site has been getting worse, since, say the second(?) wipe of UIDs. But seriously guys and girls this site is as relevant as the tech section on cnn. I keep coming back, in the hopes that someone, anyone, will start caring again and work on making slashdot worth something, but every time I do it is like expecting Lucas to not fucking rape our childhood dreams again for some more cash.

You guys should seriously be ashamed of yourselves.

Re:Well this is a new low. (0)

improfane (855034) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927634)

Frankly I agree, they do not even accept direct links.

Clicking on the article link takes you to the homepage. Gawker must be desperate for hits.

Re:start caring again (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928002)

What about a Slashdot Fork?

Isn't the base code OSS/CC Attribution?

Don't we say that any one of thousands of us has better grammar than what shows up in summaries? Should we link to original sites rather than awker & friends?

All someone needs to figure out is how to keep the trolls from posting stories vs the rate they post comment. Maybe a 5-person metamod before it gets released?

ghd (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927302)

When spring comes. Snakes wake up. They find their tasty food. White rabbits run on the grass. Many fish are in the riverGHD Hair Straighteners [ghd-hair-cheap.com]. Spring is beautiful and green. GHD Hair Straighteners [ghd-hair-cheap.com]In spring, the air is fresh, the sky is blue, the clouds are white. I often wear a red sweater and blue jean. I can fly kites on the green grass. In March we can plant trees. In spring, the weather is always sunny and warm, usually I go shopping. Sometimes I go hiking and climb mountains. I like spring.

Ulillillia-Medium of choice for aspies? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927602)

All these animated GIFs, reminds me of http://ohinternet.com/Ulillillia and his craze for animated GIFs http://www.ulillillia.us/features/mindgame/mindgamehome.shtml

Big almost static flash on the page? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35927806)

It is quite ironic to see huge Flash image in the middle of that page that is static and uses Flash to export a couple of links.

wow (1)

Tom (822) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927810)

I must say, I've just seen the first animated GIFs that I actually enjoyed.

Thanks, guys.

Put GIF (& APNG) playback tools in the browser (1)

RevWaldo (1186281) | more than 2 years ago | (#35927938)

It would be nice to have pause / slo-mo / select frame / reverse / etc for GIFs.

Harry Potteresque (1)

vtTom (591066) | more than 2 years ago | (#35928446)

These animated images are very reminiscent of the moving photos in the Harry Potter movies. If they could only figure out how to do that in a print medium....
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account