April 2nd, 2002, 02:09 PM
Switching from GIF to PNG
As far as I am aware, the majority of images on AO (apart from user photos) are in GIF format. Now I was thinking, why not change them all to PNG format? I did a batch convert on a page I downloaded from AO and on average I cut the size of each image by 45-50%.
If JP were to change all the GIFs to PNGs, not only would it mean that everything would download faster for us poor souls with 56k modems, but AO would use probably at least 5-10% less bandwidth.
It's not particulary difficult to convert the images, I just used the batch conversion option in Paint Shop Pro 6 and didn't bother with any optimisation. To change over to PNGs all that would have to be done is to recursively replace all the files in the AO images folder (or wherever the images are kept) and then do a global search for *.gif and replace it with *.png.
The PNG format also isn't owned by any one organisation in terms of patents, and is set to become the standard image format on the web in the near future.
What do you think, should AO move over to faster and free PNGs or stick with proprietory and bloated GIFs?
April 4th, 2002, 12:13 PM
Hmm, if *.png's really save 40-50 % more space this should truly be considered. Net connections are never fast enough and every (graphical ) browser is nowadays capable of showing png's. But how about you still measure the rendering times of png'ed and gif'ed pages? Rendering is very different to loading.
Q: Why do computer scientists confuse Christmas and Halloween?
A: Because Oct 31 = Dec 25
April 4th, 2002, 09:31 PM
Good point, although it would be difficult to measure rendering times without using a lot of images on my local machine (because the images would render so fast you wouldn't be able to tell the difference) or creating an image heavy page on the net.
If anyone knows about differences in rendering times (assuming they exist), please add your comments to this thread.