ART is a proprietary image file format used mostly by the America Online (AOL) service and client software.
Technical details 
The ART format (file extension ".art") holds a single still image that has been highly compressed. The format was designed to facilitate the quick downloading of images, among other things. Originally, the compression was developed by the Johnson-Grace Company, which was then acquired by AOL. When an image is converted to the ART format, the image is analyzed and the software decides what compression technique would be best. The ART format has similarities to the progressive JPEG format, and certain attributes of the ART format can lead to image quality being sacrificed for the sake of image compression (for instance, the image's color palette can be limited.)
Usage by AOL 
The AOL service can automatically convert images obtained from the Internet to the compressed ART format. This conversion, which can be turned off, can reduce the download time for image files.
Software support for ART 
The Graphic Workshop Professional software from Alchemy Mindworks Corp. supports ART files. (With later versions of the Graphic Workshop Professional software, an ART plugin from Alchemy Mindworks is required for this support.) For the Windows 2000 platform, Microsoft released the AOL Image Support Update which added support for ART images. The Internet Explorer browser no longer supports ART files as of 2006. In June 2006, Microsoft released a security update for the Internet Explorer browser. Among other things, this update removed support for ART files from the Internet Explorer browser in order to help prevent issues where invalid ART data could cause the Internet Explorer software to unexpectedly quit. An ART file that is opened with the AOL picture viewer can be saved as another file type.
- ^ a b Fernandez, Judi N. (1997). GIFs, JPEGs & BMPs: Handling Internet Graphics. New York, NY: MIS:Press. p. 53. ISBN 1-55828-562-8.
- ^ a b "Optimizing Web Graphics: Compression". WebReference.com. 2000-02-24. Archived from the original on 18 May 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
- ^ "Johnson-Grace is Now An America Online Company". Johnson-Grace. Archived from the original on 1998-12-12.
- ^ a b "Web images are saved as .art file and not as .jpg or .gif file". AOL. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
- ^ a b "AMC Graphic Workshop Professional Format Plugins". Alchemy Mindworks Corporation. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
- ^ "AOL Image Support Update for Windows 2000". Microsoft. 2001-06-19. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
- ^ a b c "Microsoft Security Bulletin MS06-021: Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer (916281)". Microsoft. 2006-06-14. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
External links