Optimizing Web Graphics (banner study mockup) | WebReference

Optimizing Web Graphics (banner study mockup)

Optimizing Web Graphics

The Great Bandwidth Shortage

"The Web seems slow today."

If this lament sounds all too familiar, you are not alone. The network's backbone isn't the problem, it can handle up to 155 Mbps (soon to become 600 Mbps)--it's what happens at each end that frustrates users. The increasing size of digital media and lack of server bandwidth are the main culprits. More bandwidth won't necessarily solve this problem. What will help is minimizing the amount of data that travels through this bandwidth. This article will show you how to minimize file size and dithering for Web graphics.

Bandwidth can be its own enemy, concludes Dr. Sunil Gupta (Gu96). Just as adding more lanes to a highway invites more traffic, increasing bandwidth invites more users. ISDN, cable modems, and ADSL (AD96) will only temporarily ease the congestion. More people will be enticed to sign on, all competing for packets.

GIF Wizard - This on-line GIF reduction program can reduce GIFs (animated or otherwise) beyond conventional methods. Combined with the techniques you'll learn here (and in Optimizing Animated GIFs) you can create highly optimized GIFs with less work. GIF Wizard actually automates many of the techniques you'll learn here, and is especially effective for reducing animated GIFs. You can optimize any on-line GIF right here:

Your Background Color (Optional): Red Green Blue



GIF Wizard
Don't miss this on-line GIF reducer. Give it the URL of any GIF or web page and GIF Wizard performs a detailed analysis of your GIF, and outputs optimized versions of it.
Welcome Web Techniques Readers!
This is the expanded version of "Optimizing Web Graphics," which appeared in the Dec. 1996 issue of Web Techniques, pp.55-61.
Both 216-Color Mac or PC non-dithering CLUTs are now available.
To use them download, unstuff/zip, and load as a Photoshop swatch or color table. For more details, read the palette page.

Comments are welcome

Created: June 10, 1996
Revised: May 2, 1997

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