3

What Are We Trying to Compress?

3.1 Where Do You Want to Go Today?

That was a very good advertising line dreamed up by Microsoft. It is full of adventure and potential excitement and is based on you, the consumer, making a choice. So now we have to make a choice about what kind of moving-image content we are going to compress. Will it be film, video, or computer-generated digital imagery? They are all different. Let’s find out why in the next few chapters.

3.2 What Is a Moving Image?

Think about moving pictures. How are they captured? They are two-dimensional recordings of an array of pixels at an instant in time. Film and TV cameras both capture motion, but the resulting images have very little in common when they are examined from a technical ...

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