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It's pronounced "jif" says GIF creator Steve Wilhite.

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Crisp    3,271

An Honor for the Creator of the GIF

Among the thousands of file formats that exist in modern computing, the GIF, or Graphics Interchange Format, has attained celebrity status in a sea of lesser-known BMPs, RIPs, FIGs and MIFFs. It was honored as a "word of the year" in 2012, and Tuesday night, its inventor, Steve Wilhite, will be accepting a lifetime achievement award at The Webby Awards.

Now, almost any fragment of digital culture can be spun up into a grainy, gratifying animation. GIFs provide a platform for nearly everything, it seems ? from rapid-fire political commentary to digital art to small moments of celebrity intrigue.

Has any file format received more attention, more accolades (or had more fun) than the GIF?

Invented in 1987, today the GIF has become the aesthetic calling card of modern Internet culture.

Since retiring in 2001, Mr. Wilhite has led a quieter existence than his creation. He goes on RV trips. He built a house in the country with a lot of lawn to mow. He dabbles in color photography and Java programming. He uses e-mail and Facebook to keep up with family.

He is proud of the GIF, but remains annoyed that there is still any debate over the pronunciation of the format.

?The Oxford English Dictionary accepts both pronunciations,? Mr. Wilhite said. ?They are wrong. It is a soft ?G,? pronounced ?jif.? End of story.?

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virtorio    2,243

Good for him.

But he's wrong.

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HoochieMamma    531

Good, been calling it that since as long as I can remember.

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compl3x    6,263
It was honored as a "world of the year" in 2012

Damn. Now it's a planet too?

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ctrl_alt_delete    63

Hahah me and boss was going at it the other day bout this. He owes me $20 lol

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Crisp    3,271

Damn. Now it's a planet too?

My bad, re-wrote it to avoid the hyperlink. Should of pasted into notepad instead.

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Xahid    4,956

The long mystery is now solved, I was wrong pronouncing it as Gif :(

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Steven P.    8,826

I always said G-if as well, s'pose I'll have to say Jif from now on lol

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+devHead    1,741

Of course it's pronounced jif. Otherwise, this graphic would have no meaning:

gif.gif

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threetonesun    1,205

It's a hard g, I don't care what this guy says. It's GRAPHICS INTERCHANGE FORMAT, why on Earth would you abbreviate that as JIF. Next he's going to tell us that JPEG stands for Goint Photographic Experts Group.

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Yazoo    246

any other examples where a word starting with 'G' is pronounced as 'J'?

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thealexweb    195

I will continue to G-if, J-if just doesn't seen remotely right.

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Lee G.    232

any other examples where a word starting with 'G' is pronounced as 'J'?

Gerbil, giraffe, ginger, gin, Georgia, gym, genuine, gist, gem, gentle...

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Osiris    804

Should have spelt it with a j then, GIF with a G 4 life. Gonna get that tatooed up like a boss.

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Jazirian    15

any other examples where a word starting with 'G' is pronounced as 'J'?

Gender, giraffe, gym, gymnastics, gem, genes, ginger, gentle, gender, genre, George, Gerald...

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Yazoo    246

Gerbil, giraffe, ginger, gin, Georgia, gym, genuine, gist, gem, gentle...

nice, any other abbreviations that follow the same logic?

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Buttus    921

nice, any other abbreviations that follow the same logic?

just off the top of my head, GEOS, Graphic environment operating system, sounds like a J

(well, sounds like a G, just has the same sound as GIF)

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King Joffrey    36

This is nothing new to me i learned this 10 years ago in school.

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trip21    23

I have a few US friends who pronounce it JIF I just thought it was a regional thing. How does one pronounce "JIF" http://www.fileinfo.com/extension/jif and not have it confused with "GIF"?

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The Laughing Man    442

Don't care what the creator says, I will continue to pronounce it with a hard G sound, anything else seems unnatural.

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+E.worm Jimmy    9,967

ok, ginger and gym are all good. But GIF will stay GIF for me, not JIF. Hard G as in Graphics Interchange Format, which it is!

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Torolol    926

so i was wrong, i should've said JRAPHICS INTERCHANGE FORMATS.

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Azusa    930

thanks to certain countries in the EU we have to call them Cifs (pronounced sif) now.

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+ir0nw0lf    368

I think if I told some a file was in a "jif" format with a "jif" file extension, most people would automatically assume .jif and not .gif LOL. Myself and 99% of the people I know have always and will always pronounce it with a hard g. Eff what the creator of the format says. He can go google himself. (pronounced joogle lol!)

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