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Vector Formats

In addition to the standard bitmap formats, several new vector formats are becoming available, such as Flash and SVG. The Flash format, developed by Macromedia, requires a plug-in to work. Why would anyone want to use a graphics format that requires a plug-in? Vector graphics are represented by mathematical formulas and numbers. This makes their file sizes much smaller when compared to bitmap images.

Animations are another area in which vector formats are a huge advantage. GIF animations require the space of several images shown one after another, but vector animations need to know only how the mathematically defined lines, curves, and colors change over time. This yields a dramatic size savings and can really open your Web presentations to some elaborate full-screen effects.


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