Multimedia is media and content that uses a combination of different content forms. It includes a combination of text, audio, still images, animation, interactivity or video content forms.
Multimedia is usually recorded and played, displayed or accessed by information content processing devices, such as computerized and electronic devices, but can also be part of a live performance. Multimedia (as an adjective) also describes electronic media devices used to store and experience multimedia content.
The most common multimedia machine consists of a personal computer with a sound card, modem, digital speaker unit, and CD-ROM. Interactive multimedia systems under commercial development include cable television services with computer interfaces that enable viewers to interact with TV programs; high-speed interactive audiovisual communications systems, including video game consoles, that rely on digital data from fibre-optic lines or digitized wireless transmission; and virtual reality systems that create small-scale artificial sensory environments.
Multimedia may be broadly divided into linear and non-linear categories. Linear active content progresses without any navigational control for the viewer such as a cinema presentation. Non-linear user interactivity to control progress as used with a video game or used in self-paced computer based training. The term "rich media" is synonymous with interactive multimedia. Hypermedia is an example of non-linear content. Multimedia presentations can be live or recorded. A recorded presentation may allow interactivity via a navigation system. A live multimedia presentation may allow interactivity via an interaction with the presenter or performer.
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