One of the most popular file formats on the internet, the GIF has been around for 30 years today. The GIF format was ‘born’ on the 15th of June in 1987. It was created by a team of CompuServe developers who were looking for a solution where images could be compressed with a minimal loss of data. Over a period of the next thirty years, GIF Images have become something totally else. Let us look at the journey of the GIF.
GIF Images were initially meant to be a simple solution for low resolution images however, today they could be seen on every corner of the internet where you would see reaction GIFs, memes, as well as endless looping set of events that you would keep watching for hours. Popularly supported by most social networking sites, Tumblr GIFs are among the most famous ones. Facebook, Twitter and various other social networks too have been supporting GIF images for a while now.
In a latest update from Facebook announced earlier today, you can now post GIF images in Facebook comments. While Facebook did allow sharing GIFs on timelines and in chat, the support for GIF images on Facebook comments was never there. Those who wanted to do so had to manually find a GIF and post a link that would play out in a thumbnail. Starting today, the official GIF button is now present in the comments box.
One of the biggest confusions over GIF images has been that how do your pronounce the extension GIF? Do you call it with a hard G (the sound that you use in a Gill) or with a softer G (the sound that you use in a Giraffe). While many argue that since GIF stands for Graphical Interchange Format, it should be used with a hard G, but the man who invented GIF images, Steve Whilhite says it is actually a softer G. Hopefully there’ll be many more years to follow!