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How-To Geek

A Short History of the GIF [Video]

From the earliest blinking “Under Construction” signs on web sites to joke images still passed around, the humble little GIF has been with us a long time. Check out this video to learn more about it.

Courtesy of LEGS Media, we’re treated to a cute claymation-style look at the birth, revision, and long life of the ubiquitous little GIF.

[via Geeks Are Sexy]

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 12/14/12

Comments (5)

  1. Bill

    Most annoying websites? The ones that have WAY too many of these critters on them… I have some severe visual challenges and all that crap on the screen moving, blinking, screaming for attention takes away from why i went to the page in the first place. There used to be a way to stop all the movement so I could concentrate on the subject matter at hand, but with the prolliferation of all the Flash ads, there is no relief in sight….

  2. Cody

    Why is it a video! It should be a GIF about the history of GIFs! GIFception!

  3. Diogo

    would be nice if we still play gifs in windows explorer of windows 7 or 8 :(

  4. Keith

    @Cody,
    HTG will have it for you soon. In a giffy. : )

  5. Smart Guy

    @Bill,

    Annoying over use of GIF’s by certain web sites are near the BOTTOM of my gripes list.

    At the top of my gripes list are those annoying advertisement windows which typically run Java scripts, Flash, or any other combination of addon/plugin junk. Stuff that can potentially kill your computer! (And still, all anyone can seem to talk about are relatively harmless tracking cookies.)

    Point is, it’s still way too easy for to get infected/”owned”/etc. when you simply visit a trusted and even well designed web site with all the eye candy turned on. Because even highly trusted web sites like Microsoft could be indirectly doing bad things through those ad windows.

    So do you really want to gripe about over use of GIF’s?

    Griping about GIF’s is like griping about bubbles in the ocean! Never mind that some people might actually like the bubbles. And never mind that the figurative ocean water is polluted with Java and Flash…

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