MultiMedia Systems/Multimedia Basics

From WikiEducator
Jump to: navigation, search

Multimedia comes in different formats. It is anything you can hear or see like text, images, concept maps, drawings, charts, pictures, music, sound, videos, records, films, animations, and wiki's.


Icon define.gif
Multimedia is media and content that uses a combination of different content forms. The term can be used as a noun (a medium with multiple content forms) or as an adjective describing a medium as having multiple content forms. The term is used in contrast to media which only use traditional forms of printed or hand-produced material. Multimedia includes a combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity 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. Multimedia is distinguished from mixed media in fine art; by including audio, for example, it has a broader scope. The term "rich media" is synonymous for interactive multimedia. Hypermedia can be considered one particular multimedia application.Multimedia

Multimedia. is a term frequently heard and discussed among educational technologists today. Unless clearly defined, the term can alternately means a judicious mix of various mass media such as print, audio and video. or it may mean the development of computer-based hardware and software packages produced on a mass scale and yet allow individualized use and learning. In essence, multimedia merges multiple levels of learning into an educational tool that allows for diversity in curricula presentation. Multimedia is the exciting combination of computer hardware and software that allows you to integrate video, animation, audio, graphics, and test resources to develop effective presentations on an affordable desktop computer. (Fenrich, 1997). As such multimedia can be defined as an integration of multiple media elements (audio, video, graphics, text, animation etc.) into one synergetic and symbiotic whole that results in more benefits for the end user than any one of the media element can provide individually. Multimedia is characterized by the presence of text, pictures, sound, animation and video; some or all of which are organized into some coherent program. (Phillips,1997).

Today's multimedia is a carefully woven combination of text, graphic art, sound, animation, and video elements. When you allow an end user, i.e. the viewer of a multimedia project, to control 'what' and 'when' and 'how' of the elements that are delivered and presented, it becomes interactive multimedia.

Key Points

Icon key points.gif
Key points

Advantages of Multimedia

  • Provides Multi-sensory Stimulus
  • Creates knowledge connections
  • Provides User Control on Pace and order
  • Address different learning styles and needs
  • Any sequence of the material
  • Any time, Anywhere


  • Complexity to create
  • Time consuming
  • Ways for direct feedback need to be incorporated

Application Areas

  • Kuser.pngUsage:A presentation using Powerpoint. Corporate presentations may combine all forms of media content.

Virtual reality uses multimedia content. Applications and delivery platforms of multimedia are virtually limitless. VVO Multimedia-Terminal in Dresden WTC (Germany)Multimedia finds its application in various areas including, but not limited to, advertisements, art, education, entertainment, engineering, medicine, mathematics, business, scientific research and spatial temporal applications. Several examples are as follows:

  • Kuser.pngCreative industries:Creative industries use multimedia for a variety of purposes ranging from fine arts, to entertainment, to commercial art, to journalism, to media and software services provided for any of the industries listed below. An individual multimedia designer may cover the spectrum throughout their career. Request for their skills range from technical, to analytical, to creative.
  • Kuser.pngCommercial:Much of the electronic old and new media used by commercial artists is multimedia. Exciting presentations are used to grab and keep attention in advertising. Business to business, and interoffice communications are often developed by creative services firms for advanced multimedia presentations beyond simple slide shows to sell ideas or liven-up training. Commercial multimedia developers may be hired to design for governmental services and nonprofit services applications as well.
  • Kuser.pngEntertainment and fine arts:In addition, multimedia is heavily used in the entertainment industry, especially to develop special effects in movies and animations. Multimedia games are a popular pastime and are software programs available either as CD-ROMs or online. Some video games also use multimedia features. Multimedia applications that allow users to actively participate instead of just sitting by as passive recipients of information are called Interactive Multimedia. In the Arts there are multimedia artists, whose minds are able to blend techniques using different media that in some way incorporates interaction with the viewer. One of the most relevant could be Peter Greenaway who is melding Cinema with Opera and all sorts of digital media. Another approach entails the creation of multimedia that can be displayed in a traditional fine arts arena, such as an art gallery. Although multimedia display material may be volatile, the survivability of the content is as strong as any traditional media. Digital recording material may be just as durable and infinitely reproducible with perfect copies every time.
  • Kuser.pngEducationIn Education:Multimedia is used to produce computer-based training courses (popularly called CBTs) and reference books like encyclopedia and almanacs. A CBT lets the user go through a series of presentations, text about a particular topic, and associated illustrations in various information formats. Edutainment is an informal term used to describe combining education with entertainment, especially multimedia entertainment.

Learning theory in the past decade has expanded dramatically because of the introduction of multimedia. Several lines of research have evolved (e.g. Cognitive load, Multimedia learning, and the list goes on). The possibilities for learning and instruction are nearly endless.

The idea of media convergence is also becoming a major factor in education, particularly higher education. Defined as separate technologies such as voice (and telephony features), data (and productivity applications) and video that now share resources and interact with each other, synergistically creating new efficiencies, media convergence is rapidly changing the curriculum in universities all over the world. Likewise, it is changing the availability, or lack thereof, of jobs requiring this savvy technological skill.

  • Kuser.pngJournalism:Newspaper companies all over are also trying to embrace the new phenomenon by implementing its practices in their work. While some have been slow to come around, other major newspapers like The New York Times, USA Today and The Washington Post are setting the precedent for the positioning of the newspaper industry in a globalized world.

News reporting is not limited to traditional media outlets. Freelance journalists can make use of different new media to produce multimedia pieces for their news stories. It engages global audiences and tells stories with technology, which develops new communication techniques for both media producers and consumers. Common Language Project is an example of this type of multimedia journalism production.

  • Kuser.pngEngineering:Software engineers may use multimedia in Computer Simulations for anything from entertainment to training such as military or industrial training. Multimedia for software interfaces are often done as a collaboration between creative professionals and software engineers.
  • Kuser.pngIndustry:In the Industrial sector, multimedia is used as a way to help present information to shareholders, superiors and coworkers. Multimedia is also helpful for providing employee training, advertising and selling products all over the world via virtually unlimited web-based technology
  • Kuser.pngMathematical and scientific research:In mathematical and scientific research, multimedia is mainly used for modeling and simulation. For example, a scientist can look at a molecular model of a particular substance and manipulate it to arrive at a new substance. Representative research can be found in journals such as the Journal of Multimedia.
  • Kuser.pngMedicine: In Medicine, doctors can get trained by looking at a virtual surgery or they can simulate how the human body is affected by diseases spread by viruses and bacteria and then develop techniques to prevent it.
  • Kuser.pngDocument imaging: Document imaging is a technique that takes hard copy of an image/document and converts it into a digital format (for example, scanners).
  • Kuser.pngDisabilities: Ability Media allows those with disabilities to gain qualifications in the multimedia field so they can pursue careers that give them access to a wide array of powerful communication forms.
  • Kuser.pngMiscellaneous: In Europe, the reference organisation for Multimedia industry is the European Multimedia Associations Convention (EMMAC).
  • Kuser.pngMultimedia Framework: A multimedia framework is a software framework that handles media on a computer and through a network. A good multimedia framework offers an intuitive API and a modular architecture to easily add support for new audio, video and container formats and transmission protocols. It is meant to be used by applications such as media players and audio or video editors, but can also be used to build videoconferencing applications, media converters and other multimedia tools. It framework provides a run time environment for the media processing. Ideally such an environment provides execution contexts for the media processing blocks separated from the application using the framework. The separation supports the independent processing of multimedia data in a timely manner. These separate contexts can be implemented as threads.
  • Kuser.png Asynchronous communication is transmission of data without the use of an external clock signal, where data can be transmitted intermittently rather than in a steady stream.[1] Any timing required to recover data from the communication symbols is encoded within the symbols. The most significant aspect of asynchronous communications is variable bit rate, or that the transmitter and receiver clock generators do not have to be exactly synchronized. Asynchronous Communications
  • Kuser.pngSynchronizationis timekeeping which requires the coordination of events to operate a system in unison. The familiar conductor of an orchestra serves to keep the orchestra in time. Systems operating with all their parts in synchrony are said to be synchronous or in sync.Some systems may be only approximately synchronized, or plesiochronous. For some applications relative offsets between events need to be determined, for others only the order of the event is important. Synchronous Communications

Multimedia in Education

  • Besides being a powerful tool for making presentations, multimedia offers unique advantages in the field of education.
  • Multimedia enables us to provide a way by which learners can experience their subject in a vicarious manner.
  • The key to providing this experience is having simultaneous graphic, video and audio, rather than in a sequential manner.
  • The appeal of multimedia learning is best illustrated by the popularity of the video games currently available in the market.
  • Multimedia can provide an enhanced or augmented learning experience at a low cost per unit to provide long-term benefit to all.
  • Multimedia enables learning through exploration, discovery, and experience.
  • Technology does not necessarily drive education. That role belongs to the learning needs of students.
  • With multimedia, the process of learning can become more goal oriented, more participatory, flexible in time and space,distance independent and tailored to individual learning styles.
  • Multimedia enables learning to become fun and friendly.


  • Kuser.pngMultimedia :A variety of resources that can be used to communicate information, a concept or knowledge.This can include people, things or computer based elements such as text, images, animation, sound and video.
  • Kuser.pngComputer based multimedia:The use of a computer to present and combine text, graphics, sound, animation and video in an electronic publication with links and tools that let the user navigate, interact, create and communicate. (Hofsetter, F. T., (2001) Multimedia Literacy.)
  • Kuser.pngInteractive Computer based multimedia : The additional features of providing user interaction. Examples :Forms that allow user data to be entered, Searching features, On-line testing

Applets such as calculators,Games

  • Kuser.pngConnected Media:Connected media does not contain interaction; instead content items are nodes in a network of connections that are the focus of interaction. The content is inside-out. The hot content today is not interactive - Flickr/Photobucket, YouTube, iTunes, RSS feeds all feature non-interactive, yet highly connected via layers of interlinked metadata ,

Welcome to the Course !