What is a TIFF Image?
The TIFF (or TIF) image file format is short for "tagged information file format" and is used as a storage format for images, photographs, and line art drawings. The TIFF file format was originally created to offer a standardized file for computer scanners in the 1980s; this was done to avoid compatibility problems with various companies' proprietary formats.
When to Use the TIFF Format
TIFF images are best reserved for print applications because they are bitmap (or pixel-based) images. Even though the TIFF format creates very large files, there is absolutely no loss of quality; this is why they are so popular in print productions and for imprint on promotional products like personalized pens. TIFF preserves the alpha transparency, the layers, and the similar aspects of image files saved from image editing software, such as Photoshop and Fireworks. These extra types of features are stored differently in each type of image editing software.
History of TIFF Images
The TIFF format was originally developed by the Aldus Corporation, and they are credited with starting the entire desktop publishing industry. The company developed PageMaker, the first real desktop publishing program, which was soon surpassed by Adobe Systems. When Adobe and Aldus merged, the TIFF became the property of Adobe Systems. The TIFF file format hasn't had a major update since 1992, but extensions and specifications have been sporadically updated.
Downloads for TIFF Specifications
TIFF has given rise to many formats and many different specifications for its properties and uses. The TIFF format has several versions available for download that can be used for any application. Currently, the most recent TIFF version is the TIFF 6.0 specification, but versions such as GeoTIFF, TIFF 4.0, and TIFF 5.0 are still available for use and download. Tag extensions and geographical data for TIFF formats are also available in these specifications.
Programs That Use and Read Multi-Page Tiffs
A multi-page TIFF file is an image file that stores multiple pages in a single location, such as faxes and email attachments. Certain programs are needed to read and convert multi-page TIFFs into useable formats for other users and programs. Many of these programs allow for the creation and edit of existing TIFF multi-page files, as well as other images that need to be grouped together.
Places to Find TIFF Software
A logical starting point for TIFF software is the Adobe site, but many other companies offer TIFF editors and viewers for free (or for a minimal fee) depending upon the intended use. These programs exist for Linux, Windows, and Apple systems and may be found at each of the individual web sites.
What TIFF Extensions are Available
TIFF 6.0, TIFF 4.0, TIFF 5.0, and GeoTIFF are a few of the TIFF extensions currently available. The intention to keep TIFF a standardized format has been abandoned because there are now approximately fifty or more variations on the original format. Different encodings can be applied to a TIFF file including Zip-in-TIFF, TIFF/IT, and Adobe Extensions for PageMaker.
Though even though TIFF images are popular for print productions and design, many designers and promotional products companies prefer vector files. These have extensions like .ai, .eps, .cdr, and .fh. Vector artwork makes sure that the logo on your stress ball looks awesome.
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