Microsoft's Cliplets app can now animate GIF files

In March, Microsoft Research launched a new and free development tool called Cliplets. The app offers a way "using semi-automated methods", for people to put in limited animation in what would otherwise be a still image. One popular image file format is GIF, but until recently the Cliplets app was unable to handle animating GIF images.

Now the Next at Microsoft blog site has announced that, due to requests from its users, the Microsoft Research team has added support for animating GIF files into the Cliplets app. You can see an example of that work on the blog (which unfortunately we can't reproduce on this page).

Keep in mind that while the Microsoft Cliplets app is free to download and use, it also does not come with any official support from Microsoft. It comes in both 64-bit and 32-bit Windows 7 versions but does not current support Windows XP or Vista. However, there are a number of tutorials that are available to check out if you are interested in working with the app. In addition, Microsoft also maintains a Cliplets message where its users offer up their own tips and tricks to the Cliplets community.

Source: Next at Microsoft blog

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12 Comments

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Why bother with GIFS though?, poor quality (256 colours), and Microsoft banned them from email software - very few people see animations unless it's via a browser.

Even Google Picasa won't display animations, seems odd Microsoft do a U-turn on this format.

Exosphere said,
Why bother with GIFS though?, poor quality (256 colours), and Microsoft banned them from email software - very few people see animations unless it's via a browser.

Even Google Picasa won't display animations, seems odd Microsoft do a U-turn on this format.

People asked and Microsoft delivered, why are you complaining?

PmRd said,
People asked and Microsoft delivered, why are you complaining?

Because hating Microsoft is the cool thing. Even if they add a new feature!

Exosphere said,
Why bother with GIFS though?, poor quality (256 colours), and Microsoft banned them from email software - very few people see animations unless it's via a browser.

Even Google Picasa won't display animations, seems odd Microsoft do a U-turn on this format.

1) Microsoft Research, and not an officially supported product
2) GIF had security concerns that were being exploited
3) GIF also had the nasty lawsuit issues, and Microsoft washed their hands of the format 'officially'.
4) If users want GIF support for some goofy reason, why not let them use it on a 'Test product'?

rahvii said,
This is exactly what cinemagram for the iOS does, and its older. http://cinemagr.am/

Um, not exactly... The concept of Cinemagraphs goes back to the 80s/90s and became more popular in GIF animations in the 90s and JAVA applets. (The term although existing a long time ago, didn't get applied to the computer variations very often.)

Cliplets creates a video based variation first, with GIF support for lighter usage being the new 'feature'.

The real 'technology' in Cliplets is the technology that processes the video loops and masking. It can create seamless loops and adjust the image using recognition and other interesting processing that is the key aspect to the technology, as the behind the scenes processing is what Microsoft Research was working on, and is using the cinemagraph concept to illustrate them.

This is where it differs from the iOS Apps that do this, as they don't have the same features or processing, even though they tend to be pretty impressive for an App. There are a few iOS Apps that use video clips, and one that uses a still image format concept.

(The technology in this project predates the iOS Apps if that makes any difference).

Even if you are an iOS user, check out Cliplets, you can have some fun with it.

rahvii said,
This is exactly what cinemagram for the iOS does, and its older. http://cinemagr.am/
1) Free version of Cinemagram launched in March. From what I can tell, Cliplets has been out since at least March 7, possibly sooner. They're about the same age.
2) More people have PCs than iOS devices.