Multimedia is simply multiple forms of media integrated together. An example of multimedia is a web page with an animation. Besides multiple types of media being integrated with one another, multimedia can also stand for interactive types of media such as video games, CD ROMs that teach a foreign language, or an information Kiosk at a subway terminal. Other terms that are sometimes used for multimedia include hypermedia and rich media. [1]

There are number of data types that can be characterized as multimedia data types. These are typically the elements or the building blocks of or generalized multimedia environments, platforms, or integrating tools. The basic types can be described as follows : Text, Graphics , Audio, Animation, Video, Graphic Objects (see: Computer graphics and visualization).

  1. Types of Multimedia
  2. Multimedia Development Environments
  3. Java Media Frameworks

multimedia multimedia multimedia multimedia multimedia

Multimedia has become a huge force in human-being culture, industry and education. Practically any type of information we receive can be categorized as multimedia, from television, to magazines, to web pages, to movies, multimedia is a tremendous force in both informing the public and entertaining us. Advertising is perhaps one of the biggest industry's that use multimedia to send their message to the masses. Multimedia in Education has been extremely effective in teaching individuals a wide range of subjects. The human brain learns using many senses such as sight and hearing. While a lecture can be extremely informative, a lecture that integrates pictures or video images can help an individual learn and retain information much more effectively. As technology progresses, so will multimedia. Today, there are plenty of new media technologies being used to create the complete multimedia experience. For instance, virtual reality integrates the sense of touch with video and audio media to immerse an individual into a virtual world. Other media technologies being developed include the sense of smell that can be transmitted via the Internet from one individual to another. Today's video games include bio feedback.

Types of Multimedia

  • Text - The form in which the text can be stored can vary greatly. In addition to ASCII based files, text is typically stored in processor files, spreadsheets, databases and annotations on more general multimedia objects. With availability and proliferation of GUIs, text fonts the job of storing text is becoming complex allowing special effects(color, shades..). Text, Start
  • Graphics - There is great variance in the quality and size of storage (Image file formats) for still images (Bitmap - gif, jpg, bmp) (Vector - svg, pdf, swf, ps). Digitalized images are sequence of pixels that represents a region in the user's graphical display.
    See also: Tutorial, Guide, Learn, by GIMP, software list
  • Audio - An increasingly popular datatype (audio file format) being integrated in most of applications is Audio. Its quite space intensive. One minute of sound can take up to 2-3 Mbs of space. Several techniques are used to compress it in suitable format.
    See also: SMIL, Article, Tutorial, Software list
  • Animation - It involves the appearance of motion caused by displaying still images one after another. Often, animation is used for entertainment purposes. In addition to its use for entertainment, animation is considered a form of art. It is often displayed and celebrated in film festivals throughout the world. Also used for educational purposes.
    Tutorial, Downloads, animation maker software
  • Video - One on the most space consuming multimedia data type is digitalized video. The digitalized videos are stored as sequence of frames. Depending upon its resolution and size a single frame can consume upto 1 MB. Also to have realistic video playback, the transmission, compression, and decompression of digitalized require continuous transfer rate. See also: iMovie, Codec, Guide, Video Tools, Software
  • Graphic Graphics (Objects) - These consists of special data structures used to define 2D & 3D shapes through which we can define multimedia objects. These includes various formats used by image, video editing applications. [2]
    See also: Tutorials, Java, Media Frameworks, Software

Multimedia Development Environments

Computer-delivered electronic system that allows the user to control, combine, and manipulate different types of media, such as text, sound, video, computer graphics, and animation. The most common multimedia machine consists of a personal computer with a sound card, modem, digital speaker unit, and CD-ROM. Interactive multimedia systems under commercial development include cable television services with computer interfaces that enable viewers to interact with TV programs; high-speed interactive audiovisual communications systems, including video game consoles, that rely on digital data from fibre-optic lines or digitized wireless transmission; and virtual reality systems that create small-scale artificial sensory environments[3].

Multimedia Tutorials and Suggested Readings See also: Web Design

Multimedia Software Development Tools:

Other Tools: API'sProgrammer's CornerSoftware Development ToolsDatabase ToolsModeling & DesignMultimediaMaths and Science


  1. 1.
  2. 2. Multimedia Databases
  3. 3. Britannica
  4. Intelligent Multimedia Computer Systems
  5. Multimedia Computer Review
  6. Computer Multimedia