QuickTime

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(n.) Developed by Apple Computer in 1991, a part of the system software architecture that seamlessly integrates audio, video, and animation across applications. QuickTime provides timing services to maintain synchronization between images and sound. Files in this format may be played by the MoviePlayer applet or by any application that can call a movie, as long as the QuickTime extension is in the system folder.

The format does not restrict the size of the window or the frame rate, but it does depend on the processing capabilities and the speed of the machine on which it plays back. With CinePak compression, QuickTime movies can be streamed from a 2X CD-ROM reader to a 320 x 240 pixel window at 12 to 15 frames per second (fps) on most machines. As is the case with most digital audio-video players, the audio track will command the timing, and video frames will be dropped in order to maintain continuous, smooth sound delivery.

QuickTime video files can be captured with any AV Macintosh with built-in encoding capabilities, but the quality of this method of capture is much lower than that achieved with a dedicated encoder card, such as the VideoVision or the TARGA system. The tools available for manipulating QuickTime are available from Apple Computer. Adobe Premiere is the most widely used application for capturing and editing QuickTime files.QuickTime version 3.0, introduced in 1998, offers cross-platform development and playback. It will handle many types of files, including MIDI, MPEG, virtual reality (VR), and animations. The ISO MPEG-4 working group has identified QuickTime as the media architecture of choice. CODECs from Sorenson, QDesign, QUALCOMM, and many others are included for video and audio compression. Media Player version 5.2 for Windows is an excellent way to view QuickTime.