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"Step away from the JPEG!" Answered

So, I decided that I'd make an instructable this week, and I'm nearly done. I've gotten to the point of uploading step icons/images/diagrams to make the instructable easier to follow. The image uploading went smoothly (the flash uploader is nice), but as I was adding the images to the instructable, I noticed something: Y'all still use blasted JPG to store images. Seriously, Instrctables? Can't you do a little better than that? JPG not only looks bad, it has no transparency support, no animations, and is no longer the only picture format supported by web browsers. At least keep the native format the picture is uploaded in. Because something like this just looks ugly as a jpeg icon.


"No animations" yeah not having animations is a bad thing ~rolls eyes~

Then every ible would look like a a geocities site designed by a 12 year old......

I think that's kinda the point,all ibles have the same layout...

Maybe animations aren't that big of an issue, but transparency and quality (both are things JPEG lacks) are kind of important.

Well, not necessarily animations, but transparency is a nice thing to have. But, animations could be helpful for things like diagrams.

you can also use animated GIF images.

Yes, but using a "catch-all" format like PNG would be helpful, as it allows for animations, full 8-bit transparency, and doesn't degrade quality.

.  GIF (~1987) is even older that JPEG (~1992). Neither is what I would call obsolete.
.  Part of the problem is you are not sizing your graphics so that Robot will not try to resize them. This causes all sorts of problems with JPEG.

What would be considered to be "in need of resizing" by the robot? I sent it 50x50 PNGs (no transparency, 24 bit color), and it still "jpegged" them.

What exactly is the problem? Why are you giving tiny images as examples - what about the pictures you want to use?


Things like icons for steps. The 'ible is 17 pages, and I wanted a way to make steps easily identifiable. But, since instructables doesn't support transparency-enabled PNGs (or be smart enough to put them on a white background and convert them to another format), they ended up looking terrible.

The site's format for "how-to" guides is geared up to photographs. Icons says you've got a software thing which doesn't really benefit from pictures, but looks a bit boring without some colour? It's not really a software-based site (unless the software supports a hardware thing.
Transparent gifs do work there, but it doesn't really matter what you use as the main content will be the text.


Well, the icons are for an instructable on how to link Google Voice to an SIP client. I was using icons to summarize the step's content (e.g. the lifesaver from the GNOME icon set as the icon for the help section). I tried uploading them as PNGs, but it converted them to a low-quality JPEG.

Screen shots would probably be more appropriate than icons, and for "filler" images, just draw something or find another image that might be appropriate. You really just need an image that supports what you're saying or demonstrates it. If I'm using images that aren't already jpg, I convert them myself in GIMP rather than rely on Robot to do it. And as lemonie mentioned, Instructables is more geared towards photographs.

They are worth nothing. They're just pictures for the sake of pictures and no one will be that bothered that they look a bit crappy because what is actually useful will be in the text.
An icon isn't going to help someone do something is it?