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Unit 2 Lesson 5

Name(s)__________________________________________ Period ______ Date ___________________

Worksheet KEY - File Formats Rapid Research


Rapid Research
You and a partner will do some rapid research and reporting on some of the most common file formats that are out there.
Your teacher will assign you one or more of the file formats listed below. Use the web as your research tool.

Fill in the row of the table for the format you were assigned. TIPs:
When you visit a web page do a text search on the page for compress
In most browsers the keystroke Ctrl+F (Windows) or +F (Mac) will get you there.
File format
name

BMP
(bitmap)

What type of
information or
data is it?

Compression?

How does it work?

uncompressed,
lossy, lossless

(just a few brief words about the theory behind the encoding or compression)

image data

uncompressed

image data

lossy

audio data

uncompressed

image data

lossless

audio data

lossy

image data

lossless

When compressing a raw image file into a jpeg format, the


algorithm used to do the compression relies on the fact that
humans can perceive differences in brightness better than
differences in color. So, data that represents differences in
color can be thrown out or lost in the compression process
without significantly altering the perceived quality to the
human eye. It typically reduces the image size by about a factor
of 10.

JPEG
(or JPG)

WAV

PNG

MP3

GIF

bitmap image files are made up of metadata including the


dimensions, the print resolution, the number of colors in the
palette, and the number of bits per pixel. following the
metadata is a table of the actual pixel data.

A WAV file can contain compressed data, but the most common
format contains uncompressed data. It uses a common way of
encoding analog audio signals, and the audio wave is sampled
44,100 times a minute, and each sample takes 16-bits to store.
A PNG file contains an 8-byte signature at the beginning that
communicates, among other things, the fact that it is a PNG file.
After that, there are a series of 16-byte chunks of data that
communicate things like the images width, height, bit depth,
the actual image data itself, and the end of the image.
The MP3 file format typically compresses an original audio file
by a factor of about 10 times. Similar to the JPEG file format,
the MP3 compression algorithm relies on the limits of human
perception, and in particular, on the fact that there is audio that
is imperceptible to the human ear. For that range of audio, the
algorithm can throw out those samples without significantly
altering the quality.
The GIF file format starts with a fixed-size header that conveys
that the file is in GIF format (and what version), and is followed
by the image data. The GIF format supports representing pixels
with a max 8-bits, so can only show up to 256 colors. This is why
GIF is less preferable for comparing photographs. GIF can also
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support multiple images in sequence to make an animated GIF.

ZIP

multiple files,
folders

lossless

Most similar to what students did in the Text Compression


widget, a ZIP file includes a dictionary and a compressed file

Question: What other file type(s) have you heard of? Which one would you like to know the most about?