Wondering Thoughts 4.5.2017-The GIF Story

Wednesday 9:57 A.M

Last night I was reviewing my materials and brainstorming about some improvements I could work on with the site. I started using .gif in my blogs, perhaps I’ll check and see how it would work out.

I receivedpablo (30) a personal message at the lower right side of my screen from a friend that was sent by a friend via FB private message informing about an earthquake. Batangas was hit by an Intensity 5.4 earthquake at 9:00 pm. There was minimum damage to property. Mostly from the old basilica, fortunately there were no casualties or loss of life.

Graphical Interchange Format(GIF)

Yesterday, I started using gif file format in my site. Somehow gif has put on some spark and makes the site look lively, don’t you think? This makes me wonder what is the inside story of Graphical Interchange Format? What makes this interesting is this was developed way back first in 1987.


The Xerox Alto (and later Xerox Star) was an early personal computer developed at Xerox PARC in 1973. It was the first computer to use the desktop metaphor and mouse-driven graphical user interface (GUI).

 Steve Whilhite of CompuServe was the engineering lead on the team that adopted the GIF format. This became  the defacto standard for the 8-bit 200w_d (11).gifcolor images It was only in 1987 when Steve developed the Graphical Interchange Format. GIF has been around for almost 28 years.

It would take another EIGHT LONG years before the Internet  arrived in the Philippines.

I can recall we had issues with our first computer which is the Texas Instrument 994/A.We got our first IBM compatible XT. It did not take long when  we found out a newer model was coming out so we migrated our IBM-XT to the IBM-286. At that time the popular computer brands were the Commodore, Apple II-e, Tandy Radio Shack (TRS-80).

Originally we wanted an Apple IIe but decided to go for IBM compatible products.In those early days I remember getting boxes of 5 1/4″ Disks from Greenhills and scouting for the latest programs and games. Only few people had installed hard disks in their computer system.

Most computers where either using the Green Monitor or White Monochrome Monitors. Sorry, LCD and LED was still a dream and decades away before being utilized. In fact my first computer which is the Texas Instrument 99/4A was connected via the antenna by a RS-232 comprising two serial ports and one parallel port.

The Internet in the Philippines 

It’s interesting to know that the Internet started in the Philippines only on March 29, 1994. It all started with a phone call to the College of Computergiphy Colleges at De La Salle University  . Internet became available on March 1994 , the Philippine Network Foundation (PhNet) finally connected our country to Sprint in the United States.

I  recall most of the people at that time were using the Bulletin Board Systems(BBS). There was a time I was requested by my superior to set up the BBS for a software house and link Lotus Notes as a backend office.  The project never took off after I was invited to join a different bigger and new company.

giphy (11)The only time I was introduced to Gif’s file format was through my yahoo account in 1998. I was blown away by the creativity of the artists coming out with spoofs of “The Ring”. Unfortunately there was no way to copy the gif file and it seems to be proprietary owned by the website.

Perhaps in the near future, I will try to figure out how to download the animate version of “The Ring”

You will be surprised that  a Filipino Entrepreneur by the name of Diosdado P. Banatao , an Engineer and inventor, discovered and developed the first-single chip graphical user interface accelerator that made the computer faster.

The (to be continued….


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