Vector graphics

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Key points

  • Vector graphics store the attributes (position, colour, line thickness etc) of shapes and allow the user to perform operations (resize, delete, move) on the shapes. This means that the value of each pixel in a picture is not stored, just a list of instructions to create each shape on screen.
  • A vector image can be re-edited at any point because the computer can simply change the attributes the edit the picture. A bitmap image can only be edited at pixel level – no information about what shapes are used in the picture is stored.
  • Vectors are resolution independent. This means that the vector graphic can be redrawn at any scale on the screen. This is not the case with bitmaps, which pixelate when the user zooms in.

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