Fundamentals of Data Representation: Comparison between vector and bitmaps

UNIT 1 - ⇑ Fundamentals of Data Representation ⇑

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This image illustrates the difference between bitmap and vector images. The bitmap image is composed of a fixed set of dots (pixels), while the vector image is composed of a fixed set of shapes. In the picture, scaling the bitmap reveals the pixels and scaling the vector image preserves the shapes.
  • Vector images scale without file size increase / decrease
  • Bitmap images scale resulting in file size increase / decrease
  • Vector images scale without distortion to the image
  • Bitmap images distort (pixellate) when scaling
  • Bitmaps are better for photo editing
  • Bitmaps require less processing power to display
Exercise: Vector vs Bitmap

You wish to create an image that will be made into a giant banner for the side of a building. What type should you use and why?

Answer :

Vector, as it allows for scaling without distortion and retaining it's file size

You wish to create an image that will be used in a game, that will run on a mobile phone and a home console. What type should you use and why?

Answer :

Vector, as it allows for scaling without distortion and retaining it's file size. You would only need one image to use on all the different systems.

You want to take an image of a local cat stuck in a tree. What type should you use and why?

Answer :

Bitmap as it is better for photographs.

Last modified on 16 February 2012, at 23:22