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Chapter 6. A Picture Is Worth a Thousand... > Images: Some Semi-Important Backgrou... - Pg. 62

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Clicks: Working with Images If you use Windows, then you're probably familiar with the BMP (bitmap) images that you can create with the Paint program. Although Internet Explorer is willing to work with these types of images, Netscape isn't. There- fore, I suggest that you avoid them and use only GIFs and JPEGs. (Even if you know all your users run Internet Explorer, you should still avoid BMPs because they tend to be huge compared to the equivalent GIF or JPEG file.) 62 How do I get graphics? The text part of a web page is, at least from a production standpoint, a piece of cake for most folks. After all, even the most pathetic typist can peck out at least a few words a minute. Graphics, on the other hand, are another kettle of digital fish entirely. Creating a snazzy logo or eye-catching illus- tration requires a modicum of artistic talent, which is a bit harder to come by than basic typing skills. However, if you have such talent, you're laughing: Just create the image in your favorite graphics program and save it in GIF or JPEG format. (If your program gives you several GIF options, use GIF87 or, even better, GIF89, if possible. If your software doesn't know GIF from a hole in the ground, see the next section, where I show you how to convert the file.) The nonartists in the crowd have to obtain their graphics goodies from some other source. Fortu- nately, there's no shortage of images floating around. Here are some ideas: · Many software packages (including Microsoft Office and most paint and illustration programs) come with clip art libraries. Clip art is professional-quality artwork that you can freely incorporate in your own designs. If you don't have a program that comes with its own clip art, most software stores have CDs for sale that are chock-full of clip art images. · Grab an image from a web page. When your browser displays a web page with an image, the corresponding graphics file is stored temporarily on your computer's hard disk. Most browsers