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Encyclopedia: Multimedia Terminology

A growing percentage of the websites presented on the World Wide Web today feature multimedia files. Multimedia on websites is what makes them all so attractive, entertaining and worth being paid repeat visits. The term 'multimedia' refers to all types of media files, such as text, graphics, animation, audio, video, etc., integrated into a website's layout. Here you will learn more about the separate media file formats, their basic uses and the various techniques for presenting them online.


Being the first image format introduced for the needs of the web, GIF (short for Graphics Interchange Format) represents a bitmap file format, based on the 2D raster data type. It allows for lossless data compression, which helps for the image quality to be preserved after the file size decrease.


JPG is one of the most widely used image file formats on the web. It is responsible for reproducing photographic color images, making it the format that best represents the real world online. Its name is an abbreviation of Joint Photographic Experts Group, the committee that created it more than a decade ago.


PNG stands for Portable Network Graphics - a standard image file format for web pages, boasting patent-free distribution, many quality advantages such as a lossless method of compression and the possibility for images to include text details such as author name and description.


An acronym for 'tagged image file format', TIFF is one of the most popular image file formats for storing bit-mapped images such as digital photographs and line art graphics on the web today. It is suitable for representing both multi-color and gray-scaled images.


AVI is the video format, which Microsoft adopted for its video files. Today, AVI files are almost synonymous with video files and the format is still being used for a great deal of video files.


Mp4 has been the leading video clip format on the Internet for almost 10 years now, and movies, encoded in MP4, still represent a great portion of the online video clips production.


MP3 is the file format that changed the world of music forever, bringing CD-audio quality music to everybody, everywhere.


The FLV file is a Flash video format with video streaming capabilities, which is used to deliver Flash-based videos over the Web.


SWF is one of the most popular Flash container formats and it's used for most of the animated ads and video clips on today's websites. The .SWF files are played on a Flash Player software installed on the users' browsers.


Fonts work for the aesthetic presentation of text content on websites. They represent a combination of the properties of a set of characters including typeface, size, pitch, and spacing. The wide variety of fonts available on the Web Wide Web is organized into groups, called font families.

Online Media

In today’s world, we are more absorbed in media content than ever. And this holds especially true for the Internet realm, where media files can be found everywhere – from simple web pages to large corporate portals.

Multimedia Content

In today’s world, we are more absorbed in media content than ever. And this holds especially true for the Internet realm, where media files can be found everywhere – from simple web pages to large corporate portals.

Videos / Movies

Initially presented as a TV format, video clips made a splashing debut on the Internet several years ago, and thanks to the recent progress in web technologies, we can today all enjoy watching video clips online.


Animation refers to the quick presentation of a sequence of images on the screen with the purpose of creating the illusion of a real movement.


MPEG or Motion Pictures Expert Group are the people behind the MPEG4 and the MPEG1 standards, who brought to our attention two revolutionary multimedia files – the .mp3 audio file and the .mp4 video file.


No one could image our world without images – they have been a part of our lives for a really long time now and today they continue playing an important role in helping us reflect all interesting aspects of the world we live in.


Illustrations, both vector and raster, have found a second life with the creation of the World Wide Web, representing both image gallery pictures and elements of the web page design.

Clip art

Clip art was used long before the computer was even created, but it gained popularity only after it was incorporated into the web as a web design element.


The modern computer would not have existed the way we know it if it was not for graphics. Starting from the Graphical User Interface (GUI) and ending with the most simple icon, graphics are everywhere in the world of computers.

3D graphics

The 3D Graphics added a new perspective to the regular images and started a whole new era in image design, related to the creation of both abstract and regular 3D artwork.