1. #1 José
    November 19, 2009

    So, does scienceblogs only allow you to post things as jpegs?

  2. #2 seo
    November 19, 2009

    it’s sad that most of the subtlety of the joke was lost when converting the original PNG into a JPEG.

  3. #3 Greg Laden
    November 19, 2009

    seo: I only intended to add subtly…

    I tend to use jpg because it is better. Right?

  4. #4 Dan J
    November 19, 2009

    Pretty simple decision, actually. Always save an original in a lossless format like TIFF, PNG, XCF, etc. GIF is lossless, but is only 8 bit color depth maximum.

    JPG is wonderful for display of photographs as it compresses information using a lossy algorithm that allows smaller file sizes (thus reduced download time, and bandwidth usage) but loses information every time you convert/save it.

    JPG compression also creates “artifacts” alongside what should be smooth lines or edges. This makes compressed JPG files unsuitable in most cases for line art, text, or large areas of a solid color.

  5. #5 HP
    November 19, 2009

    For work, I generally use .png format, because I’m mostly dealing with screenshots of stress contour displays. OTOH, for a 2-color stick figure drawing, .png is pretty much overkill. Hell, I’d go with .gif for an image like that.

  6. #6 CybrgnX
    November 19, 2009

    I use massive amounts of pictures in reports. I’ve experimented with many types of formats (for WinXp).
    for 2 color BW the PNG is very useful and much better then JPEG in every way. For images(photos) PNG is slightly more efficient the zipped-TIFFs or zipped-BMPs but JPEG is best for the final report ONLY. The archive uses anything (usually PNG) other then JPEG. JPEG has a bad rap because it is mis-used to make small sizes. Under 50% is usually good looking, over 75% and it looks like crap. Under 256 colors do not JPEG above 256 colors then JPEG only for non-archive images.

  7. #7 MadScientist
    November 20, 2009

    I usually have to convert my eps files to PNG so that it can be used in certain inferior but popular software, displayed on screen, and printed half-decently. I use JPEG rather than PNG for photos though – primarily because of the smaller file size. If I really need a photo to look good it’s going in as a TIFF.

    The cartoon reminds me of a conversation a few years ago:

    colleague: Why don’t you just use ‘Excel’ ™ to make your plots? Everyone else does!

    me: OK, I’ll send you a nice small file with only 700,000 points to plot and you send me a nice plot of it, ok?

    Same goes for all my scientific data which is filed away in databases – “why not use Excel” … and those people wonder why I laugh my ass off when I see them attempting to use Excel on data sets that are just far too large for it to handle.

  8. #8 rob
    November 20, 2009

    i have 65537 reasons why excel sucks for plotting.