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i tried today to change to konqueror web browser, i came to daniweb and noticed that all the gif's were replaced by the broken link icon, so i googled away and after a while i found this:-

Q) What is up with GIF support?
A) This has to do with issues with Unisys' LZW patent. GIF support is turned off from Qt™ 1.44 onwards by default.


it also notes that in order to use gif on your site you have to have the apropriate licence before you can legally use gif support.

Do you think it's wise to continue to use the patented proprietary gif format on websites knowing this? i've converted all my gif's to png. the only problem on my site now is the external link to daniweb doesn't show in any LEGAL browser, and hence if i want to see the image, i have to break the law :(
if you want me to transform the images for you, i have tools to do this in batch mode, no problem. is daniweb licenced to publish gif images? and if so, what is daniweb's stance on forcing users to break the law by using non-legal ways to view them?
I'm not legally minded but this scars me greatly, i believe the only way forward without getting bitten is to avoid proprietary formats. they may not be interested in me now but what if in 10 years time i have a net income of 10 million a year, will they get interested then?

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Last Post by John A
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We were able to search the patent databases of the USA, Canada, Japan, and the European Union. The Unisys patent expired on 20 June 2003 in the USA, in Europe it expired on 18 June 2004, in Japan the patent expired on 20 June 2004 and in Canada it expired on 7 July 2004. The U.S. IBM patent expired 11 August 2006, The Software Freedom Law Center says that after 1 October 2006, there will be no significant patent claims interfering with employment of the GIF format.

http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/gif.html

The Unisys GIF patent has expired,

http://burnallgifs.org/

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excellent, i was so worried about that, ty, so how come konquerer can't show them by default?

they are refering specifically to the "Unisys' LZW patent" i'm no expert but is LZW the compression technology? and maybe thats the reason for their stance?

why would they actively still take this stance if the patent ran out years ago?
these answers only beg more questions :/

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for instance the gnu specifically say this about it:-

"In the past, GIFs have had patent problems. However, now that the IBM and Unisys patents (and other patents world-wide that are relevant to LZW compression), GIFs that are based on the 87a or 89a standard are acceptable. Please be wary of proprietary applications that may include non-standard patented technologies (we'd prefer you use free software applications when authoring for our websites). In general, PNG or JPEG format, are still safe, and are probably better from a technical standpoint. For details regarding the old GIF problem, see"

my specific issue is this "GIFs that are based on the 87a or 89a" that the average person is going to know very little about. do all your softwares that create gifs only conform to these free verions? or are they as the gnu say somtimes using propietary versions.
If you don't check, you'll never know ;)

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>so how come konquerer can't show them by default?
Not sure. I've never had this problem with Konqurer (DaniWeb displays just fine).

>is LZW the compression technology?
Yes. It's what actually makes gifs small enough to be useful in web design.

>why would they actively still take this stance if the patent ran out years ago?
Who's "they"? If you're referring to Unisys, then no, they don't care about it anymore. If you're referring to the GNU, it's mainly because they don't want another proprietary graphics format to emerge. There's nothing really wrong with gifs right now.

I'm pretty sure that all gifs created nowadays are free from all patents and regulations.

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>Not sure. I've never had this problem with Konqurer (DaniWeb displays just fine).

the problem is with qt aparently, as of version 1.44, the support was removed, see original post!

>Who's "they"? If you're referring to Unisys, then no, they don't care about it anymore. If you're referring to the GNU, it's mainly because they don't want another proprietary graphics format to emerge. There's nothing really wrong with gifs right now.

No, I meant konqueror, but i realise now that it's qt

>I'm pretty sure that all gifs created nowadays are free from all patents and regulations

nope, only 87a or 89a standards, see my 3rd post!

I don't think gif's are a good thing to use unless your going to file (man 1 file) every gif that comes our way to make sure they comply to the only 2 standards that are now legal to use!

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>problem is with qt aparently, as of version 1.44, the support was removed
I have no idea what you're talking about. The screenshot attached is with Konqueror on QT version 3.

>nope, only 87a or 89a standards, see my 3rd post!
Those are the only types I'm aware of.

http://www.21newmedia.com/resources/articles/seo/internet-marketing-tools-part-four-graphics-basics.asp

Graphic Interchange Format, better known as GIF, uses a maximum of 256 colors and is best suited for images such as logos, buttons and bullets.
GIF images can be saved in two different formats:
- 87 - 89a
The 89a format is the preferred GIF format

Attachments snapshot1.png 367.35 KB
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>I have no idea what you're talking about.

oh dear, maybe you need to check the original post again :/ see the bit about qt, 1.44 != 3.0

>The screenshot attached is with Konqueror on QT version 3.

maybe thats my issue right there then, re: maybe i am not using qt3 but an earlier version, i don't see how that can be though, this is on my gentoo box. i'll look into that.

>Those are the only types I'm aware of.

after much reading, i find thats right, thanks for pointing that out :)


I'm still not convinced that GIF is any use other than for animation though, it's use in the past i can understand, but other than the fact that PNG does not support animation and MNG hasn't really taken off (probably because gif is free now?), the only thing that still has me going the way of PNG is this.

extract from wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GIF#Unisys_and_LZW_patent_enforcement
See 'Alternatives' section
PNG offers better compression and more features than GIF.
The format has replaced GIF in many instances where true-color imaging, alpha transparency and a lossless data format are required.
and this:
identical 8-bit (or lower) image data rendered in PNG and GIF formats should yield similar sizes.

is there really a need to use both GIF and PNG when we can simply adopt MNG!?

It seems to me that the way to go, for reasons discussed above, is with PNG, even if GIF is legal now, just because GIF is now free, all that does is give us a sigh of relief over the images we allready have.

I think that the only thing which needs to be addressed now is MNG.
Is MNG better than GIF89a's animation feature and why hasn't there been widespread adoption of it?

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>maybe you need to check the original post again :/ see the bit about qt, 1.44 != 3.0
Um yeah, except that "GIF support is turned off from Qt™ 1.44 onwards", which would cover QT 2 and 3. Obviously this statement isn't true (or at least not completely true) anymore.

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i get the feeling some people here aren't here to discuss the threads topic, the konqueror issue is now solved, it was because i didn't have gif in the USE flags.

can we get back to the topic now please?

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>i get the feeling some people here aren't here to discuss the threads topic
The thread's topic is about unlicensed gif images. I provided some links which ultimately said that there's no issue with using unlicensed gifs anymore. I don't see anything more "on topic" that can be discussed, since we already know that unlicensed gifs aren't an issue.

>the konqueror issue is now solved
Glad to hear.

>can we get back to the topic now please?
Discussing the technological advantages and disadvantages of different image formats is no more on topic than discussing whether QT supports gif images. Had you properly bothered to do your research on this subject, this thread wouldn't even need to exist.

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fine, i'll make a new thread every time the topic changes even though its partly related ^^

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>fine, i'll make a new thread every time the topic changes even though its partly related
I don't have a problem with the thread going off-topic when it's slightly related, but then again, you shouldn't either.

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