Animated Gif Avatars

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CarvedTones

Board of Directors, Vice President
Andy
Any chance of making static Avatars mandatory? Animated gifs are distracting, consume resources and are 'tacky'.
Ken,

Depending on what browser you use, you generally can choose to disable them. Here (click) is a search on ways to do that. In many browsers you can just pres Esc. I have difficulty reading a page that has anything flashing on it also. It's weird; it isn't me disliking the style (in fact I like some of the more subtle ones) and the computer I am on is plenty fast enough, but it takes me substantially longer to read text on a page that has motion than on one that doesn't.
 

patlaw

Mike
Corporate Member
There doesn't appear to be a good solution for blocking them in Google Chrome. The extensions that used to work are reported as non-working now.
 

CarvedTones

Board of Directors, Vice President
Andy
There doesn't appear to be a good solution for blocking them in Google Chrome. The extensions that used to work are reported as non-working now.
Yeah, I use Chrome and am aware of that. I posted the other info hoping Ken might use something else. On pages with blinking ads, I sometimes have to resort to using IE just so I can stop them. It really is bizarre how it affects me. If I am reading a wall of text (usually in depth technical details), blinking crushes my reading speed and comprehension.
 
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tmwassack

Any chance of making static Avatars mandatory? Animated gifs are distracting, consume resources and are 'tacky'.
I agree with Ken and would also love to see emoticons removed - as they too are distracting and a resource eater...

Respectfully,
Tom Wassack
Asheboro, NC
 

patlaw

Mike
Corporate Member
Yeah, I use Chrome and am aware of that. I posted the other info hoping Ken might use something else. On pages with blinking ads, I sometimes have to resort to using IE just so I can stop them. It really is bizarre how it affects me. If I am reading a wall of text (usually in depth technical details), blinking crushes my reading speed and comprehension.
That's not uncommon, Andy. In fact, some flashing lights can trigger certain types of epilepsy. A friend's son has that issue. In other people, flashing lights can trigger migraine headaches. I have no knowledge of whether animated GIFs can cause either issue, but I do not they can interfere with your eyes' ability to follow text on a screen.
 

windknot

New User
Scott
Ken, I know you were not talking about mine but I had to give a Wolfpack plug. Those little jumping heads are pretty annoying
 

CarvedTones

Board of Directors, Vice President
Andy
Let us know how it works. The comments say that it doesn't work well. Apparently it does what Ken wants.
Seems to work for me also. I press Esc and the animation stops. Might not work with other content types like flash, which is the worst offender in ads.
 

tarheelz

Dave
Corporate Member
I don't think emoticons or animated gifs have been resource eaters of note since we all moved up from 14.4k baud modems.
 
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tmwassack

I don't think emoticons or animated gifs have been resource eaters of note since we all moved up from 14.4k baud modems.
Resources are not always band width related - CPU and memory are resources also!

Regards,
Tom Wassack
Asheboro, NC
 

CarvedTones

Board of Directors, Vice President
Andy
Resources are not always band width related - CPU and memory are resources also!

Regards,
Tom Wassack
Asheboro, NC
We have a couple of older machines in the house that this is true on. It isn't the animated GIFs that cause them to be sluggish in general but can have a noticeable impact when you browse a page that has them versus one that doesn't. They scroll static content much faster. But if we programmed everything for the lowest powered machines out there, the site would not be very attractive. Tough to know where to draw the line.
 

merrill77

Master Scrap Maker
Chris
Resources are not always band width related - CPU and memory are resources also!
...wait for it....



I don't think emoticons or animated gifs have been resource eaters of note since we all moved up from [STRIKE]14.4k baud modems[/STRIKE] Pentium processors and 8M DIMMs.



Sorry, couldn't resist. As mentioned - it's tough to decide where to draw the line with old hardware. Even a 5-year-old machine should have no trouble with this site.
 

nn4jw

Jim
Senior User
The animated avatars haven't really bothered me. In fact, I hadn't even noticed that there were any animated avatars. That's probably because I've always been able to just see what I wanted too on web pages. In other words, I don't even look at advertisements and such. Using a larger monitor helps with that.

That said, just out of curiosity I followed the link on how to deactivate animations in the various browsers and it was pretty simple to deactivate them in Firefox. So I guess I'll notice them even less than before.
 

ehpoole

Administrator
Ethan
Resources are not always band width related - CPU and memory are resources also!

Regards,
Tom Wassack
Asheboro, NC
With respect, the rendering of a GIF image (particularly a small avatar or, especially, emoticons) requires considerably less resources than the rendering of text in general, and less even than the decoding and rendering of the HTML and CSS that defines this web page's look and layout. In other words, their consumption of resources is really inconsequential unless we are going back to the days of slow dialup modems and 486 CPUs, particularly when modern CPUs spend more than 90% of their time completely idle executing NOOP instructions. The GIF format is incredibly easy for a processor to decode and render as it is a format designed for a time when even an 8MHz CPU was considered "turbo" and video adapters lacked any sort of accelerated GPU capability.

While I am not a huge fan of animated GIFs in general either, they represent a very small proportion of the avatars on this site and only a small handful of the emoticons available are animated (and not that heavily used these days compared to their non-animated counterparts).

Part of belonging to any group means learning to get along with and accept the members of that group. As with any gathering of individuals, some may be a little "louder" than others while others may be too quiet and soft-spoken. The same goes for web-based discussion forums and we all just need to learn to get along with and accept one another -- those little annoyances included.
 
T

tmwassack

...wait for it....



I don't think emoticons or animated gifs have been resource eaters of note since we all moved up from [STRIKE]14.4k baud modems[/STRIKE] Pentium processors and 8M DIMMs.



Sorry, couldn't resist. As mentioned - it's tough to decide where to draw the line with old hardware. Even a 5-year-old machine should have no trouble with this site.
Sorry,
I can't resist - with nearly 33 years as a software developer, I've always had to program systems that take into account not only the user experience, but the resources of the intended users. I agree that the impact on resources from animated gifs and emoticons is minimal, but since the original poster opened the door on the user experience, I felt free to add my .02 about the impact of animation and emoticons. Many blog sites have eliminated the use of such features because they contribute little to the overall content of the discussion and negatively impact the user experience as the original poster described.

Respectfully,
Tom Wassack
Asheboro, NC
 
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