Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Multimedia system

Multimedia. Multimedia system

Multimedia is the use of different types of media to present a message. Multimedia systems are information systems that combine different types of media. The multimedia systems involve many participants, a wide range of experiences and emphasise the information process of displaying.

Characteristics of multimedia systems
  • Text, hypertext and numbers;
  • Text is any sequence of symbols that have a meaning;
  • Hypertext is a text presented in such a way that when selected, new information will be displayed;
  • Text, hypertext and numbers are the building blocks of any multimedia system;
  • Text and numbers are the word-processed words that aid and begin communication in any information system;
  • Hypertext is text that has hot links that enable connections to other sections of text or other characteristics within a multimedia system;
  • The information contained is in static form to enable the reader to develop a written understanding rather than audio or visual communication.
Information technology that is required for text, hypertext and numbers consists of word processors that are capable of completing the links and are effective text converters, as some data may need to be changed from ASCII code in order to be used within the multimedia system.


This is the sound that has been captured and converted from a sound wave (analog) into a digital form. Consideration needs to be given as to the use of audio, as the file is usually very large and will need to be compressed. Music can be stored in waveform or MIDI files. Most current sound cards support wav. as well as midi files.

Images and/or animations

Images are either vector or bit-mapped images. These images, which could include a photo, are said to be “static” or motionless.

Hypermedia is the use of pictures, charts, graphs and icons, to provide linked information. Animations are images that appear to move.


Video combines pictures and sounds displayed over time. Using video in multimedia systems enables moving images in real-time to be displayed to enhance the text, audio and other graphics images. E.g. in encyclopaedias, video clips are inserted that reflect the content of the other features of the section displayed. Hyperlinks and buttons are frequently employed to activate video within the presentation.

MPEG is a compressed video format that has become a standard now. QuickTime is the video and animation format developed for Apple Computers.

Interactive multimedia

An interactive presentation a two-way communication between the user and the presentation.

A multimedia system enables the participants to create a realistic display and the ability to interact with the system. Tools such as buttons and hot spots created in applications enable the user to interact with the multimedia system. There is a need to ensure that the interactivity does not take away the meaning of the multimedia system.

Differences between Print and Multimedia.
  • Mode of display-print is limited to hardcopy. Where as multimedia uses computers, organisers, TV , wireless pockets;
  • Interactive –print can just be read while multimedia can give response back to the user;
  • Static and dynamic. Print media is static. It will not change unless reprinted. Multimedia is dynamic as it can be changed anytime;
  • Indexing- in print media index is selected and few while in multimedia every word can be indexed;
  • Data structure- in multimedia data has to be sorted to make it easily available. Or searched.