Technical Terminology
9/25/2009
Analog: Method of representing data using a continuously varying electrical voltage. Analog video degrades each time it's copied or transmitted from one piece of equipment to another.

Audio mixer: Device used to select and vary the volume of different audio signals from various sources.

CD-ROM: Compact Disc-Read Only Memory, capable of holding up to 650 MB of data.

CD-R: Recordable CDs; you can record on these, but only once.

CD-RW: Rewritable CDs; you can record and re-record on these over and over, much like tapes.

Digital: Method of representing data using binary numbers. Digital data can be copied and transmitted from one piece of equipment to another without losing quality.

DPI: Dots Per Inch, measuring the resolution of an image. The greater the DPI, the higher the resolution and the larger the file size.

DVD: Digital Video Disc, capable of holding two-plus hours of high-quality digital video; or Digital Versatile Disc, a double-sided, dual-layer disc that can hold eight hours of high-quality digital video or 30 hours of VHS-quality video.

Film scanner: Device that captures the image of a slide or negative and converts it into a digital file that can be displayed, edited and stored on a computer.

FireWire port: High-speed serial data port; allows various types of equipment to connect and communicate with each other.

Flatbed scanner: Device that captures the image of a flat object and converts it into a digital file that can be displayed, edited and stored on a computer.

S-Video: System that uses higher-density videotape than VHS to improve picture quality; requires special video cassettes, tape media, plugs, jacks and cables.

Thumbnail: Low-resolution representation of an image file; allows many images to be visible on the computer screen at once without affecting the computer's performance.

Time code: Recorded on the videotape along with the image and audio; provides a unique identifier for each frame; displayed as hours, minutes, seconds and frames (HH:MM:SS:FF). The three time code systems used for video are LTC, RC and VITC.