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Chapter 20. Becoming Master of the Raste... > Hoist that Raster and Rake those Pix...

Hoist that Raster and Rake those Pixels

You know you've finally reached the enviable status of Hopeless Computer Dweeb when you know the meaning of the word “rasterize.” In regular human terms, it means to convert objects to pixels. You probably aren't aware of it, but your computer is constantly rasterizing things. Every time you edit an object, Illustrator and your system software rasterize paths to display them as pixels onscreen. Illustrator rasterizes characters of type to screen pixels. And when you print your artwork, your printer rasterizes the mathematical path definitions as teeny printer pixels.

Legend has it that the word “rasterize” was coined during the early days of monitor development. Your monitor displays stuff on screen by projecting pixels in horizontal rows. It's almost as if the monitor were raking pixels across the screen, which is where the word raster—Latin for rake—comes in. Nowadays, rasterize is used for any kind of pixel creation, whether onscreen, inside a printer, or inside a program such as Illustrator.



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