What is a GIF file?
You’ll likely see GIF files every time you kiểm tra your social truyền thông media feeds. But what does GIF mean, and how vì thế these files work?
GIF stands for Graphics Interchange Format. GIF is a raster tệp tin format designed for relatively basic images that appear mainly on the mạng internet. Each tệp tin can tư vấn up to lớn 8 bits per px and can contain 256 indexed colors. GIF files also allow images or frames to lớn be combined, creating basic animations.
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These files use the .gif extension and can be opened in a wide range of programs.
History of the GIF tệp tin.
The GIF tệp tin format was created in June 1987 by computer scientist Steve Wilhite and his team at the US technology company CompuServe.
Originally designed to lớn tốc độ up the tải về process for large images, it also replaced CompuServe’s black-and-white format for tệp tin downloads with a color format.
CompuServe’s early versions of the GIF tệp tin format were called 87a and 89a. Along with black-and-white XBM files, GIF was the first image format to lớn commonly appear on websites.
The GIF tệp tin has evolved to lớn offer more animation functions. For example, creators gained the ability to lớn loop GIF animations in 1995, following work on the Netscape Navigator browser. Facebook began supporting GIFs in năm ngoái, with Instagram following in 2018.
What are GIF files used for?
The Graphics Interchange Format is designed to lớn display simple images and animations. But what is a GIF used for specifically?
Web graphics and logos.
Because they can only display a limited number of colors, GIF files aren’t built to lớn contain high-quality photographs. Instead, GIFs are better suited to lớn graphics and logos featuring sharp lines and edges — and relatively few colors.
Memes and online animations.
You’ll come across endless animated GIFs on websites and social truyền thông media platforms. GIF files create a flipbook effect by containing a number of related images, giving the impression of a video clip — but they don’t feature any sound and tend to lớn have a low resolution. GIFs are also a popular way to lớn post online memes, humorous clips spread by social truyền thông media users.
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Pros and cons of GIF files.
Learn about the advantages and disadvantages of GIFs before selecting this tệp tin format for your images.
Advantages of GIF files.
- What GIF animations lack in sophistication they làm đẹp for with tốc độ and impact. They’re quick to lớn create, don’t require too much technical know-how, and can spread across social truyền thông media sites lượt thích wildfire as memes.
- The color limits placed on GIFs keep their tệp tin sizes relatively small. This can help them load faster on trang web pages.
- GIF files boast a feature called lossless compression. This means their image quality doesn’t decline when their data gets compressed.
Disadvantages of GIF files.
- The GIF tệp tin format only supports a palette of 256 colors, meaning images may have a low resolution or even look slightly blurry.
- Because they use multiple images, animated GIF files can sometimes be tricky to lớn return to lớn and edit.
- Although GIFs are generally small and quick to lớn load, a slow mạng internet connection could delay or negatively affect their appearance on a webpage.
How to lớn open a GIF tệp tin.
Opening GIF files is straightforward on a Mac or Windows computer. Simply tìm kiếm for the tệp tin name and double-click on it when it appears. Then, choose compatible software, such as Adobe Photoshop. Just click on your preferred program. GIFs have wide compatibility — they can be opened through most major image and video clip editing programs.
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GIFs are also easy to lớn open through web-based browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer. In the case of Internet Explorer, simply click on the File thực đơn and then Open. Select Browse followed by All Files. Click on the GIF tệp tin name and then Open.
How to lớn create and edit a GIF tệp tin.
Follow these easy steps to lớn create and edit an animated GIF using Adobe Photoshop:
- Upload the images you want to lớn use in your GIF to lớn Photoshop by heading to lớn File > Scripts > Load Files into Stack.
- Click on Create Frame Animation.
- Click on Make Frames From Layers in the Timeline panel.
- Choose the Repeat thực đơn in the Timeline panel and select Forever.
- Simply hit Play at the bottom of the Timeline panel to lớn preview your animation.
- To share, head to lớn File > Export > Save for Web (Legacy).
GIF files: frequently asked questions.
Can GIF files be used for high-resolution photos?
GIF image files can only contain 256 colors, making them unsuitable for high-resolution photographs from digital cameras. JPEG files are a more popular option for photographs containing sharp details due to lớn their ability to lớn display millions of different colors.
Does copyright law apply to lớn memes?
Many GIF memes shared on social truyền thông media sites contain snippets of copyrighted material — such as images from films or photography agencies. It’s not common for copyright holders to lớn take legal action against people creating memes for non-commercial use, but it’s better to lớn error on the side of caution. Businesses using animated GIFs for commercial purposes, however, should abide by their local rules and regulations when selecting GIF images.
Are there limits on GIF tệp tin sizes?
Many online GIF creation tools limit the size of the files you can make. The top limit tends to lớn be 200MB. Time limits apply too, with some tools curbing the length of an animated GIF at 15 seconds. Limiting the number of images — or frames — within your tệp tin will also make it easier to lớn manage.
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Can I add sound to lớn my GIF file?
Because they aren’t true video clip files, GIFs are unable to lớn carry sound. Popular video clip tệp tin formats such as AVI, MP4, and WEBM can contain sound and images simultaneously.
What’s the difference between GIF and PNG files?
The PNG format is newer than vãn the GIF tệp tin but offers similar benefits, including lossless compression. One key difference is that only GIFs tư vấn animation. Some people prefer PNGs over GIFs for static trang web graphics because they can display more than vãn 16 million colors, instead of just 256.