Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Safari brings new color to the web

Safari may not be rewriting the rules for Web browsing on Windows just yet, but it's leading the way with one significant change: photographs with better color.

Unlike the prevailing browsers on the Internet, Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Mozilla's Firefox, the Apple browser supports different ways of encoding images that can mean richer, deeper colors. With the beta version of Safari now on Windows, Mac OS X users now aren't the only ones who'll be able to see the difference.

However, Apple won't keep that edge for long. Mozilla's forthcoming Firefox 3 browser, due to ship in beta form this July, likely will include support for richer color, said Vlad Vukicevic, a technical leader at Mozilla and a photo enthusiast.

Together, the moves could help boost the Internet beyond the orbit of the sRGB color scheme, a broadly supported but limited standard initially introduced by Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft. But it's not likely Web photography will achieve sRGB escape velocity until the dominant Internet Explorer also follows suit.

While average Web surfers aren't likely to notice much of a difference, some professional photographers do care about the issue. For example, those selling images over the Web as stock art want them to look as good as possible, but they often encode their images as sRGB to make them appear better on the screens of potential purchasers.

read the whole article from usatoday

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