Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Raster images are stored in a computer in the form of a grid of picture elements, or pixels. These pixels contain the image's color and brightness information. Image editors can change the pixels to enhance the image in many ways. The pixels can be changed as a group, or individually, by the sophisticated algorithms within the image editors. The domain of this article primarily refers to bitmap graphics editors, which are often used to alter photographs and other raster graphics. However, vector graphics software, such as Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape, are used to create and modify vector images, which are stored as descriptions of lines, Bézier splines, and text instead of pixels. It is easier to rasterize a vector image than to vectorize a raster image; how to go about vectorizing a raster image is the focus of much research in the field of computer vision. Vector images can be modified more easily, because they contain descriptions of the shapes for easy rearrangement. They are also scalable, being rasterizable at any resolution.