Some Assembly Required

Once you've got all of your digital-media assets together (that is, your pictures, texts, videos, and sounds), you will probably want to assemble them into a unified presentation or program of some sort. That's when you'll need a multimedia authoring tool. There is no one-size-fits-all tool, however; all of them have their strengths and weaknesses, and which one you choose depends on what you want to create.

Multimedia-authoring tools often use a controlling metaphor to describe and define how they integrate media. Some tools use a book metaphor, others use a slide show, still others rely on a timeline. Here's a look at some of the many Mac multimedia-authoring tools, arranged by metaphor.

The Bit Budget

Multimedia projects ...

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