News and History of the PNG Development Group from 2000
Herein lie news items and historical stuff primarily of interest to the
Portable Network Graphics Development Group itself. Feel free to poke
around even if you're not a member, though. Note that some of the links,
particularly the older ones, are broken; in some cases this is explained by
later entries. Other links (CompuServe, tcg.arl.mil) have fallen prey to
reorganizations or upgrades; should they ever reappear, the entries below
will be updated as needed.
Keep in mind that this is history here...
- current - see here
- 19 September 2000 - Sun releases version 1.0a of the Java2
Micro Edition Mobile Information Device Profile (J2ME MIDP), a Java
profile for cell phones and similar devices. PNG support is required,
you betcha! (Although not transparency support, alas...)
- 6 September 2000 - David
Lehn and Hadley Stern, a couple of design folks at Razorfish,
write a nice article for Webmonkey that hopefully will debunk, once and for all, Lynda
Weinman's "web safe" palette as anything but safe. Death of the
Websafe Color Palette? contains several technical inaccuracies
(e.g., "the 15-bit and 16-bit palettes are not subsets of the 24-bit
palette"--ouch!), and its conclusion is perhaps too optimistic, but
its overall message--that the so-called "web safe" palette isn't--is
right on the mark.
- 4 August 2000 - PC
Magazine rates PNG number 4 on the list of Internet Technologies to Watch. The story also
appears on page 145 of the 1 September 2000 issue of the US printed
version. (Note, however, that PNG is "an alternative to JPEG" only
in the sense of being complementary; see the basic introduction page for tips on where PNG makes more sense and
where JPEG does.) Thanks to Michael Broschat for the
- 26 July 2000 - pngcrush, Glenn's PNG optimizer, not only breaks the top 40
in the list of downloads at SourceForge but does so at number 30. Way to go, Glenn! (And PNG,
- 24 July 2000 - libpng 1.0.8 is released. This version adds
support for Cygwin and WinCE DLLs, improves the GNU C MMX support, and
fixes a minor memory leak in progressive reading.
- 12 July 2000 - Version 1.1.1 of the Multimedia Home Platform standard, ETSI TS 101 812 V1.1.1 (2000-07), is published by the ETSI telecom standards organization. The
standard specifies PNG as one of its image formats.
- 1 July 2000 - libpng 1.0.7 is released. This version fixes
some memory-allocation bugs, changes the locations of some internal
struct members to restore binary compatibility with 1.0.5 and earlier,
adds a work-around for a bug in Photoshop 5.5's iCCP chunks, and adds
support for Windows DLL builds.
- 27 June 2000 - Greg's article, PNG, MNG, JNG and Mozilla M17, appears on Slashdot. Alas, the M17 part is
slightly premature. An updated and
corrected version is available locally.
- 27 May 2000 - PNG "decide[s] the fate of the global Internet
economy!" Or so says Wired. Check out their article, India Eyes
Role in Net Regs, for details. So much for the W3C and XML...
- 16 May 2000 - SinDominio
publishes an article (in Spanish) by `Lupus Yonderboy' entitled, Si los
GIFs te queman, quema los GIFs (loosely, "If the GIFs burn you,
burn all GIFs"). Of course, PNG is most excellently espoused as the
logical alternative, you betcha.
- 8 May 2000 - PNG finally achieves parity (sort of) with JPEG and
GIF in Java 2 Standard Edition (`J2SE') 1.3. According to the new
features page, "PNG images are loaded and drawn the same way as GIF
and JPEG images in the Java 2D API." Took a while, but at least it's
- 3 May 2000 - The PNG home site moves for what should be the last
time, thanks to a new libpng.org domain that can be redirected at
will if the underlying host site should ever change again. The new URLs
For now, the http and ftp sites are hosted on the same machine, so the
content is identical. (Note that the MNG and zlib home sites also
- 25 April 2000 - Mark K. Anderson's article, The Latest GIF Tiff, is published in The Industry Standard and
subsequently picked up (in abridged form)
by PC World.
It covers much the same ground as Evan Hansen's CNET article (see the
18 April 2000 entry) but with a stronger anti-software-patent
angle provided by Don Marti.
- 24 April 2000 - Peter Coffee's column, Some attention to image size would speed Web `sights', is
published in PC Week.
He makes a much-needed plea to Web developers, both professional and
amateur, to pay attention to the size of the web content they're
creating and to minimize that size wherever possible--especially when
it comes to images. He also comments on PNG's strengths in interlacing
and alpha transparency (particularly for anti-aliasing), and [blush]
he says nice things about Greg's book, too. [Note: as of mid-2004, PC
Week has been renamed eWEEK,
and Peter Coffee's columns are no longer available.]
- 24 April 2000 - Gerard Juyn sets up a PNG and MNG mirror site in
Not only that, the top-level page
will be the home of the MNG library he's writing. You da man, Gerard!
- 18 April 2000 - Evan Hansen's article, Patent demands
may spur Unisys rivals in graphics market, is published on
covers the continuing Unisys/LZW saga (see PNG
news from 1999), but it includes some interesting new information
on the size of Unisys's license demands. Unfortunately, the
concurrent news about full alpha-transparency support in several recent
browser releases--Mac IE 5.0, iCab 1.9, Mozilla 2000-04-14, and
NetPositive 2.2--got a bit muddled in the translation from phone
interview to text. But the article was well-received by the Slashdot crowd, with a notably lower quotient of clue-challenged
comments than the last such posting generated.
- 5 April 2000 - A third patch for libpng 1.0.6 ("c") is
released. It restores backward compatibility with regard to libpng's
freeing of text info (which was briefly incompatible with previous
libpng releases). It also replaces the use of strdup(), which does not
exist on some platforms.
- 28 March 2000 - A second patch for libpng 1.0.6 ("b") is
released. This one-liner fixes a problem in the (non-default)
fixed-point RGB-to-grayscale conversion routine.
- 27 March 2000 - Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0 for
Macintosh is finally released (well over a year after the Windows release...).
It is the first major browser with what appears to be complete and
perfect PNG support. Greg is most impressed! Check out the screen shots (especially if you're the
developer of another browser!).
- 25 March 2000 - A patch for libpng 1.0.6 ("a") is released. It
is required for programs that intend to support the iCCP chunk (ICC
profiles, not previously supported by libpng) or that use a non-STDIO
version of libpng (i.e., not the usual version).
- 20 March 2000 - libpng 1.0.6 is released. This version adds a
functional (but incomplete) GNU C port of the x86/MMX assembler code, a
new pngminus demo app, the latest release of Willem van
Schaik's PNG Suite images, a new png_jmpbuf() macro to
help programmers migrate to the next major release, and support for the
iTXt, iCCP, sPLT and sCAL chunks and for unknown chunks. The older
gregbook demo apps have also been updated, bugs have been
fixed, and a number of new makefiles have been added.
- 17 March 2000 - Guan Yang has set up another mirror for both
the PNG and MNG home sites:
The new site is in Copenhagen, Denmark. Hats off to Guan!
- 14 March 2000 - The PNG home site is Six-Packed (a weekly
showcase of half a dozen sites hosted by Pat Cashin). Thanks!
- 7 March 2000 - Greg gives a talk on graphics, PNG, MNG, Mozilla,
and related topics at a meeting of the Linux User Group of Davis. Some photos are available at the
site (and no, Greg did not hold his book for more than the
30 seconds or so it took to take those pictures). The presentation itself is also
- 2 February 2000 - Anthony Celeste's article The Future Of Web Design - Part I is published at Corel's
designer.com. It covers
JPEG 2000 and PNG ("the underappreciated format"), and Greg even
squeezed in a couple of quotes. The second part of the article will cover MNG and SVG.
- 18 January 2000 - Version 1.0 of the 500-page HAVi Specification
Interoperability, an IEEE-1394 and Java-based home-networking
standard for consumer electronics) is published. It includes PNG as one
of its mandatory content types for embedded bitmaps (the other one being
"HAVi raw bitmap," which is actually an uncompressed variant of PNG
that has a HAVi-specific file signature and uses "RdAT" chunks instead
of IDATs). Only colormapped PNGs are allowed, and while the spec does
no explicitly mention the tRNS chunk, it does refer to the possibility
of PNG pixels with alpha values in the section on visual composition.
- 2 January 2000 - Michael
J. Hammel's very
nice review of PNG: The Definitive
Guide appears in the January 2000 issue of Linux Journal.
Here are some related PNG pages at this site:
Last modified 27 January 2013.
Copyright © 1995-2013 Greg Roelofs.