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FlashPix picture comes into focus

The FlashPix graphics format took shape this week as Kodak announced several products supporting the technology and put the final specification online. The company claims that FlashPix will allow high-resolution images to be rendered much quicker than image formats like GIF, TIFF, BMP or PCX, making it ideal for use over the Internet.

The FlashPix graphics format took shape this week as Kodak announced several products supporting the technology and put the final specification online. The company claims that FlashPix will allow high-resolution images to be rendered much quicker than image formats like GIF, TIFF, BMP or PCX, making it ideal for use over the Internet.

Kodak's Image Magic System is a service which will capture and save images in FlashPix format to CD-ROM. Each FlashPix CD can store hundreds of high-resolution (1024 x 1536 pixels) images, the company said. Kodak also introduced the Image Magic Picture Disk Plus which can store scanned FlashPix images on a floppy disk, and Image Magic Print Service which allows users of Microsoft's Picture It! FlashPix image creation software to design 'photo gifts' and send them to Kodak over the Internet. Kodak will then print and send them out to a specified recipient.

Hewlett-Packard, Netscape, Microsoft and Live Picture are among companies planning to send the FlashPix standard specification to the World Wide Web Consortium in a bid to make the format ubiquitous on the Internet.