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The Graphics Interchange Format (better known by its acronym GIF -- NOT pronounce Jiff. Just don't do it! Don't even think about it. It's graphics, not jaffics, so why would it be pronounced jiff?) is a bitmap image format that was developed by US-based software writer Steve Wilhite while working at the Bulletin board service (BBS) provider CompuServe on June 15, 1987 and has since come into widespread usage on the internet due to its wide support and portability.

The format supports up to 8 bits per pixel for each image, allowing a single image to reference its own palette of up to 256 different colors chosen from the 24-bit RGB color space. It also supports animations and allows a separate palette of up to 256 colors for each frame. These palette limitations make the GIF format less suitable for reproducing color photographs and other images with continuous color, but it is well-suited for simpler images such as graphics or logos with solid areas of color.

In January 12, 2015, An Xiao Mina, a worker in translation software, published a post in her blog defending that Digital Culture is Like Oral Culture Written Down. Comparing the old print culture, when people would think carefully about how you arrange words to convey exactly what you mean to say, now in digital/oral culture, people would act this way: "I has the feels. Here’s a GIF. Because GIFs fill the gap where nonverbal expression exists".[1]

GIFs are the perfect accompaniment to Steemit based on their ability to communicate complex (and/or blatantly sarcastic) information within a few simple still frames that trick the monkey-brain into believing there is motion. In May 2017, the steemian @cryptoctopus revealed that over the last year he collected some cool gif found on Steemit because a good gif at the right place and the right time always brighten up his day.[2]


  1. Digital Culture is Like Oral Culture Written Down Written by Xiao Mina on The Civic Beat Medium Blog in January 12th, 2015.
  2. Top 10 Gif to Use on Steemit - Post Your Own and Let's Vote in the Comment Section! Written by @cryptoctopus on Steemit in May 17th, 2017.


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