Linked by Christian F.K. Schaller on Tue 23rd Mar 2004 19:25 UTC
Graphics, User Interfaces Computer graphics have long been dominated by bitmapped images. However, the free software community has taken an innovative lead by adopting scalable graphic formats on its desktops. Inthis article I cover the history and rise of scalable graphics on the desktop from my angle - as a proponent of its use in the GNOME platform. This article mostly focuses on SVG's progress from a GNOME point of view, both because GNOME has progressed the furthest and because I am most knowledgable with GNOME's efforts. I will however mention major landmarks in other projects where appropriate.
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Haven't RTFA yet, will in a minute. The issue of vector graphics keeps coming up though, and as a designer with 7 years solid experience with tools such as Flash, Freehand, Fireworks, Illustrator and ToonBoomStudio, I wanted to weigh in on the conversation. Vector graphics are great up to a point. Once you start adding layers, transparency, gradients, path complexity (i.e. detail) you can get very bogged down. There comes a point when bitmapped artwork is actually more efficient. Any designer will tell you that with vector tools alone, it is much more difficult to create realistic imagery than it is to create such graphics in a program like Photoshop (bitmap). It will be an interesting space to watch, but I wouldn't expect vector graphics to be the "holy grail" of UI features.