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Chapter 3. Preparing Your Computer and M... > Converting Files to Other Formats

Converting Files to Other Formats

First, a quick definition: If you've never heard of file conversion, it's the procedure you follow when you change a file from one format to another. Many computer applications understand only one or two file formats, whereas others can understand many—and that's the reason behind this section.

When you choose documents and files that will be saved on DVD and used for many years, it becomes important to save those files in the right format; this can help ensure that you'll still be able to watch your digital video, listen to your music, or open your Letter to the Editor in 10 years as easily as the day after tomorrow. Formats do “die out” over the years—this makes perfect sense, because everyone tends to standardize on one or two very successful and popular formats. After that decade has passed, you definitely want your music saved in MP3 format and not SND format. (Never heard of SND format? Gotcha! It's an older, once-popular Macintosh sound recording format that has all but disappeared, and it's the perfect proof of my point.)


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