Can't have GIFs on your profile picture anymore

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I was wondering why you can't have GIF's as your profile picture anymore.  

Does anyone know why you can't have them as your profile picture anymore?

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Posted (edited)
On 5/28/2019 at 5:24 AM, Imouto Kitten said:

Maybe because its an old, obsolete format that's been completely superseded by jpeg and png that refuses to die despite there having been no reason to use it in the last decade.

Perhaps the better question is why anyone would want to subject their profile picture to the technical limitations of gif.

You do know gifs are animations like clips of video that play in a loop, your profile says your blind so maybe you're just unaware of what a gif actually is?

Edited by n o b o d y

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GIF(Graphics Interchange Format) is an old, raster-based image format that supports 256-color pallets, one bit of transparency, and animations. It is notable for being one of the first formats to allow animations to be played on webpages without the need for JavaScript or special plugins, and it is this capability that kept the format in wide use despite JPEG(Joint Picture Experts Group) and PNG(Portable Network Graphics) both offering 24-bit trueColor support and PNG also offering superior lossless compression and 8-bit alpha support.

Animated PNG(APNG) is an extension to the PNG format that adds support for animation, and which was already supported by all major graphical web browsers by the time I went blind. Combined with PNG being a technically superior format to GIF, this extension removed the only reason that remained for using GIF over other formats.

If anything, I'd argue its the people who continue using gif as acatch all for animated images that don't know what a gif actually is, but meh, not like I'm likely to change how anyone uses any particular word.

That said, it does make a difference whether the forum doesn't allow gifs as avatars or doesn't allow animated avatars at all. It also makes a difference whether the site doesn't allow animated avatars or just has a file size limit on avatars such that most animations are too big to fit within that limit. Ignoring compression, a 10-frame animation could be as much as ten times the size of a still image, and a 100 frame animation could be another order of magnitude increase in file size. Even at the usually small resolutions imposed on avatars, even short animations can get really big really quickly, especially if the animation is smoothly done.

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, Imouto Kitten said:

GIF(Graphics Interchange Format) is an old, raster-based image format that supports 256-color pallets, one bit of transparency, and animations. It is notable for being one of the first formats to allow animations to be played on webpages without the need for JavaScript or special plugins, and it is this capability that kept the format in wide use despite JPEG(Joint Picture Experts Group) and PNG(Portable Network Graphics) both offering 24-bit trueColor support and PNG also offering superior lossless compression and 8-bit alpha support.

Animated PNG(APNG) is an extension to the PNG format that adds support for animation, and which was already supported by all major graphical web browsers by the time I went blind. Combined with PNG being a technically superior format to GIF, this extension removed the only reason that remained for using GIF over other formats.

If anything, I'd argue its the people who continue using gif as acatch all for animated images that don't know what a gif actually is, but meh, not like I'm likely to change how anyone uses any particular word.

That said, it does make a difference whether the forum doesn't allow gifs as avatars or doesn't allow animated avatars at all. It also makes a difference whether the site doesn't allow animated avatars or just has a file size limit on avatars such that most animations are too big to fit within that limit. Ignoring compression, a 10-frame animation could be as much as ten times the size of a still image, and a 100 frame animation could be another order of magnitude increase in file size. Even at the usually small resolutions imposed on avatars, even short animations can get really big really quickly, especially if the animation is smoothly done.

You have a really good point and i agree with you, but your original response comes out a little hostile and not really helpful to the op. Gif is the standard/most popular format for animated images and is what most people are used to and familiar with. It's sad that the other options like APNG weren't adopted as the new standards hopefully that will change in the future, but i doubt many people even know about the other formats. The op just wanted to know why they couldn't upload there animated gifs, not why they shouldn't. Last time i checked the site does allow gifs, but there's probably a file size limit as you said. @GottaGo! I would try uploading a gif with a smaller file size and check the info when uploading to see if the limit is actually shown in the prompt.

Edit: Okay just tried uploading a gif and it worked up until i refreshed the page, might be a bug @Maki

Edited by c o t t o n

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GIF images are automatically converted to WebP format for compatible browsers.

They should still be animated, but there may be a browser compatibility issue, or an issue with the WebP filter itself.

I'll look into this later and see if I can narrow down the issue.

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18 minutes ago, Maki said:

GIF images are automatically converted to WebP format for compatible browsers.

They should still be animated, but there may be a browser compatibility issue, or an issue with the WebP filter itself.

I'll look into this later and see if I can narrow down the issue.

I am using the insider preview of Chromium Edge, definitely could be on my end.

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On 6/2/2019 at 6:09 AM, Maki said:

GIF images are automatically converted to WebP format for compatible browsers.

They should still be animated, but there may be a browser compatibility issue, or an issue with the WebP filter itself.

I'll look into this later and see if I can narrow down the issue.

@Maki did you look into this and get it fixed yet?

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