Artist Creates World’s Longest Working Gif

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The Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) is a bitmap image format that was developed by US-based software writer Steve Wilhite while working at the internet service provider CompuServe in 1987 and has since come into widespread usage on the World Wide Web due to its wide support and portability.

The format supports up to 8 bits per pixel for each image, allowing a single image to reference its own palette of up to 256 different colors chosen from the 24-bit RGB color space. It also supports animations and allows a separate palette of up to 256 colors for each frame. These palette limitations make the GIF format less suitable for reproducing color photographs and other images with continuous color, but it is well-suited for simpler images such as graphics or logos with solid areas of color.

We all love the quirky gif files don’t we? From short clips to perfectly looped ones, the GIF is one of the most popular image file format on the internet today. And while users across the globe compete to make that perfectly looped GIF that give you a hard time deciphering, Finnish artists Juha van Ingen and Janne Särkelä decided to do something entirely different.

They have created ‘As Long As Possible’, a GIF that is nothing but a black square that counts up from 1 to 48,140,288 at 10 minutes interval. With 48,140,288 frames to go through, the GIF will take 1000 years to finish the loop!

And since it won’t be humanly possible to see the entire GIF for anybody alive, the ‘art work’ has currently been put on display at FISH Gallery in Helsinki. The display is nothing but frames out of the GIF, which incidentally weighs in at 12GBs.

But that is not all. ‘AS Long As Possible’ will go on real time display in 2017, when the GIF file format completes 30 years. It is supposed to stay on display till 3017!