Multimedia content types – what makes the web a new generation media
With its rich sеt of presentation capabities the web has grown into a new-age media that combines the information delivery techniques of all traditional media types – television, radio and newspapers. Through the interactivity possibilities it supports, the web offers a new way of reflecting events, by allowing regular, non-professional users to keep their own journals online and readers to give their real-time feedback to the presented news. Thanks to the huge ‘broadcasting’ potential of the online media, a certain piece of news can reach any part of the globe in seconds, which makes us the most informed generation the world has ever known.
The web media uses a variety of content elements (text, images, audio, video) for presenting information to the online public. In most cases those elements are used together in the form of multimedia content (i.e. text and image, text and video, etc.) to reinforce the presented message. Namely the multimedia content has shaped the web as we know it today, offering us both much better looking websites and an opportunity to watch a video directly from the site without needing to download it first, or listen to a song live, or browse a high quality image gallery.
Despite the great variety of visual elements on the web, the text remains the backbone of the delivered information. The visually pleasing presentation of text contents on a website is one of the most important tasks for web designers. They can control the style of the displayed text by using various text design types, more popular as fonts. There is a long list of text fonts that can be used on the web, which is one of the main factors for the great visual diversity of websites we see today.
The text content on websites is often supplemented by various images that are aimed at visualizing the information contained in the text areas. Apart from having presentation functions the images can also be used as important call-to-action and navigation layout elements such as buttons, headers, menus, etc. One of the most widely used online media image types include illustrations, subject-focused images used to accompany text in newspaper and magazine articles, books, short stories, and clipart, small graphics added to websites with the purpose of emphasizing certain areas. Besides static images, the web also offers information in the form of animations – animated images, banners or other elements that add motion to websites.
The multimedia content building the ’tissue’ of websites has been recently added a new important element – the video. With the implementation of the YouTube-style video format, most of the informative websites today have taken a step further in delivering on-the-spot information to their audiences. In addition to increasing the informative value of websites, the videos also represent a highly effective educational technique used by companies to showcase their products or services to the clientelle in a user-friendly manner.