Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Graphics Mozilla Google Media

Can A New Open Photo File Format Replace JPEGs? (cnet.com) 271

Got lossless compression? An anonymous reader quotes CNET: Google, Mozilla and others in a group called the Alliance for Open Media are working on a rival photo technology. In testing so far, the images are 15 percent smaller than Apple's HEIC photo format, said Tim Terriberry, a Mozilla principal research engineer working on the project. But smaller sizes are just the beginning... it's got a strong list of allies, an affinity for web publishing and modern features that could make it the best contender yet for overcoming JPEG's 1990s-era shortcomings... JPEG isn't just limited by needlessly large file sizes. It's also weak when it comes to supporting a wider range of bright and dark tones, a broader spectrum of colors, and graphic elements like text and logos...

The HEIC's new rival is from the Alliance for Open Media, a group whose top priority is a video compression technology called AV1 that's free of patent licensing requirements. It's got heavy hitters on board, including top browser makers Google, Microsoft, Mozilla and the most recent new member, Apple -- though Apple's plans haven't been made public. And it's got major streaming-video companies, too: Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, Facebook, videoconferencing powerhouse Intel and Google's YouTube. And with the support of chip designers Intel, Nvidia and Arm, AV1 should get the hardware acceleration that's crucial to making video easy on our laptop and phone batteries.

To use Apple's HEIC, "makers of software, processors and phones must jump through a lot of hoops to license patents," which CNET predicts "means HEIC will have trouble succeeding on the web: patent barriers are antithetical to the web's open nature."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Can A New Open Photo File Format Replace JPEGs?

Comments Filter:
  • by Lunix Nutcase ( 1092239 ) on Sunday January 21, 2018 @06:39PM (#55974447)

    HEIF is not an Apple format. Apple only got involved with it years after it was standardized by MPEG in 2015.

    • I guess this is a similar mistake to "Apple's proprietary AAC audio CODEC"...

      which is not from Apple to begin with.

      • Clearly AAC means Apple Audio Codec. /s

        Yes, I have heard that claimed before to “prove” it’s Apple’s format.

        • To be fair, at least some people may have been confused by the similarly-named ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec), which does have "Apple" in the name.

          But yeah, my first thought when hearing this was, "How is this any more "Apple's format" than HEVC or the other things put out by MPEG?"

  • Why isnâ(TM)t JPEG 2000 supported on all browsers? Wavelet compression was invented in the 1980s and itâ(TM)s still not supported on all browsers.
    • If you want to annoy the recipient of your pictures, send them in JPEG 2000 !
    • Why isnÃ(TM)t JPEG 2000 supported on all browsers?

      What I want to know is why isnÃ(TM)t Unicode supported on Slashdot? Inquiring minds want to know.

      • by tepples ( 727027 ) <tepples AT gmail DOT com> on Sunday January 21, 2018 @08:31PM (#55975011) Homepage Journal

        At one point, there was a push to make Slash support Unicode better. That ended when vandals figured out how to use bidirectional override code points to spoof moderation scores and otherwise wreck Slashdot's layout [slashdot.org]. Others used the new code points to post obscene "ASCII art".* That led to a code point whitelist and a halt on further development of Unicode support in Slash.

        Rehash, a fork of Slash maintained by SoylentNews PBC, fully supports UTF-8. I don't know exactly what it does with current and future directionality control characters.

        * I mean ASCII art in the broad sense: use of characters from other blocks for their glyphs rather than their meaning, in the same way that ASCII art in the strict sense uses Basic Latin.

        • A clear-thinking person would quickly realise that they could whitelist the small subset of Unicode characters that cannot be used in nefarious ways, but leads to English text being displayed correctly. But there you have it.
          • Or they could blacklist the bidirectional and combining diacritic stuff and allow the rest.

            But know their mentality is like that of dark ages peasant. Consuming dirty water until you die of dysentery was good enough for grandad and dad and it's good enough for them too.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by roca ( 43122 )

      JPEG2000 compression isn't that much better than JPEG. In some cases it actually looks worse than JPEG at the same file size. See e.g. http://vterrain.org/Imagery/JP... [vterrain.org]
      No point in going to the trouble of deploying a new standard image format everywhere if you don't get huge gains.

      Also JPEG2000 only aimed to be royalty-free for "Part 1", the core codec. The patent status of the other 13 parts of the standard is murky.

      • by dwywit ( 1109409 )

        It must have something going for it - it's used to compress video frames for conversion to Digital Cinema Packages.

        And you can't just substitute {your favourite alternative compression standard} into a DCP - it's *got* to be JPEG2000.

        • by roca ( 43122 )

          No doubt there are cases where it makes sense. But the Next Big Image Format needs to be a lot better than that. HEIC is, but it's patent encumbered. Hopefully this new AV1-based format will be even better, and patent-unencumbered too.

    • by Misagon ( 1135 )

      1. It is computationally expensive.
      2. While parts of it are royalty-free, algorithms for faster compression and decompression is patented.

      Yes, it is used for Digital Cinema, but systems in movie theatres always use special hardware for decompression.

  • by grub ( 11606 ) <slashdot@grub.net> on Sunday January 21, 2018 @07:15PM (#55974611) Homepage Journal
    I generated SHA-256 hashes of all my precious family photos going back 20+ years then deleted the originals. I figure if we ever wanted to look at them, I can just reverse hash 'em!
  • Holding this up against JPEG is the wrong standard. Does it outperform PNGs?

  • We should only need one image format, that automatically identifies the type of image that it is looking at. There is no format today that can take an image of, say, a newspaper page with both text and image on it. Different parts need different image compression techniques. Some lossless, some lossy.

    That is something that would be useful. Particularly to non-technical people that do not understand the difference between JPeg and PNG. 15% better compression is a waste of time and certainly not worth co

    • I put the blame on Adobe for letting Photoshop and Illustrator save PNGs as hugely bloated files. Still to this day I hear people saying JPEGs are smaller than PNGs, even for corporate logos saved directly from the master file (PSD/AI).

      ImageOptim should be item #2 on the software list of every Photoshop user.

    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      We should only need one image format, that automatically identifies the type of image that it is looking at. There is no format today that can take an image of, say, a newspaper page with both text and image on it. Different parts need different image compression techniques. Some lossless, some lossy.

      Sounds like you want magic, if I'm doing preservation work I might want it all lossless. I might be scanning a photo book where I care about the pictures or a ledger where I care about the text. What if the text is added on top of the photo or blended into it with transparency? What's text anyway, is it black on white or is it runes and hieroglyphics and stone tables and scrolls? If you want to mix it up I think you should just go with a document format like PDF because the text is probably better off being

    • There is no format today that can take an image of, say, a newspaper page with both text and image on it. Different parts need different image compression techniques.

      We have one already: djvu

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

  • by duke_cheetah2003 ( 862933 ) on Sunday January 21, 2018 @07:23PM (#55974663) Homepage

    The number of image formats documented for computer systems is pretty big playing field. Do we really need another one? Surely one of the already existing formats will suit the needs of every possible use case, already?

    If compression is the goal, I have to question that goal.. is that really necessary? Our storage is getting bigger exponentially, our bandwidth between devices is growing just as fast, is better compression really needed?

    • Do we really need another one?

      Yes. AV1 outperforms JPEG and PNG. WebP (based on VP8) also outperforms [google.com] JPEG and PNG. WebP never saw much adoption but AV1 (a descendant of VP8) has a better chance given all the organsiations supporting it [aomedia.org].

      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        A format that can be losslessly converted from JPEG would be handy too. JPEG can be compressed losslessly to save about 20% on average, because it uses run-length encoding that can be replaced by Huffman. Archivers were doing that back in the 90s, with StuffIt on MacOS being the first I think.

  • by AbRASiON ( 589899 ) * on Sunday January 21, 2018 @08:10PM (#55974901) Journal

    http://xooyoozoo.github.io/yol... [github.io]

    Sadly, I think it's got some stuff caught up in patents or something - the demo is very good.
    I must admit, image wise, we haven't gone far in a long time. I'd like to see a very high compression lossless replacement myself and now that I (occassionally) do some light graphics work, JPG NEEDS to die, as soon as humanly possible, it's awful.

    • BPG [bellard.org] is based on HEVC. The patent licensing situation around HEVC is a complete mess with three different patent pools from which you need to get three separate licenses from and some HEVC patent holders (like Technicolor) are not in any patent pool so you also need another license from them.

      Fortunately, AV1 is licensed under royalty-free terms and has no such hassles.

  • We just had Apple introduce their new format, which isn't bad but is yet another format to deal with

    Yes, JPG isn't as efficient, but storage is super-cheap these days and I'd gladly take universal support over slightly better compression.

    • ...or at least let software catch up before it's set as the 'default' in image-taking devices.

      Coworkers need to take photos of products for me for example, and everyone with an iPhone has to change settings so HEIC isn't the default, since Photoshop doesn't recognize them (at least my PC's CS6 doesn't) for uploads to, like, Google Drive. Some are not tech literate at all, so this is a fairly big hassle for them, and it makes working with other people a pain..first time it happened I had no idea what was goi

  • Nothing other than iStuff knows what to do with it. It's fine, but right now it's inconvenient, so JPG it is.

    Does HEIC support transparent backgrounds? That's the only real shortcoming of JPG that has fostered the growth of PNG.

    • Nothing other than iStuff knows what to do with it. It's fine, but right now it's inconvenient, so JPG it is.

      Does HEIC support transparent backgrounds? That's the only real shortcoming of JPG that has fostered the growth of PNG.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

      In short, yes, HEIC does support alpha planes in addition to many other things.

  • Once upon a time... it took my Amiga 3000 (68030@25Mhz) around 30 seconds to decode a 1024x768 JPEG at 15 Bits color depth. Resizing to screen size (usually 800x600), smoothing out artifacts, put in some dithering took another 30 seconds... I dare not to imagine how long it would have taken on a much slower Amiga 500 (68000@7Mhz), not to speak of the infamous JPEG decoder for the CPC6128 which a friend used to convert single pictures OVER NIGHT.

    This was no fun at all. I always hated JPEG for being horribly

    • This was no fun at all. I always hated JPEG for being horribly slow. Even my first 486 usually took ten seconds to decode the same picture and only after aquiring the "quick picture viewer 386" from Oliver Fromme. It took Irfanview on early P3 and Athlons to display JPEG without feeling bored...

      When I was a boy, I got my first PC, a P133 with 72M RAM and a 720M hard disk.

      I also soon aquired a reasonable sized, uh... collection of jpegs. I never remember encoding delay being that bad.

      Also, by the time we got

    • http://www.tvgohome.com/faq.ht... [tvgohome.com]

      11. Why use a JPEG for the listings instead of text?

      Because I want precise control over the layout. And because it seriously annoys "real ale" Internet users who do all their browsing on text-based hand-held calculators, and that arouses me.

  • Maybe using JPEGs for the comparison images wasn't the best choice (at least I can't see much difference by the unnamed and HEIC).

  • Why did nobody use JPEG2000? It is notably better than JPEG. Both had patent issues, but that hasn't held-up open adoption of the JPEG format.

  • by AndyKron ( 937105 ) on Sunday January 21, 2018 @11:26PM (#55975585)
    I was just getting used to png.
  • .HEIC File Extension File Type: High Efficiency Image Format Developer: Moving Picture Experts Group
  • by nashv ( 1479253 )

    The graphics artists hate JPEG (commented on Slashdot).
    The scientific imagers hate JPEG (personal experience).
    The photographers hate JPEG (commented on Slashdot).

    The users don't know any better and couldn't care less as long as they can see what they want to.

    So who the fuck decided to put JPEG on every thing that produces anything visual ?

    • The graphics artists hate JPEG (commented on Slashdot).
      The scientific imagers hate JPEG (personal experience).
      The photographers hate JPEG (commented on Slashdot).

      We do? We hagte inappropriate use of JPEG, that's for sure. If someone sumps the lively low noise 14bpp output from their $30,000 EMCCD into a JPEG, then I want to cry, rage and flip tables.

      Also, if I see another fucking JPEGged graph I am going to seriously lose it.

      And I still use JPEG for most stuff, because it's enairely appropriate as an end p

"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." -- Albert Einstein

Working...