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What Does Multimedia Mean?

Multimedia refers to content that uses more than one medium. The categories of media are slippery, but they generally include:

  • Text
  • Sound
  • Graphics/images
  • Animation/video (live footage as opposed to animation)

Multimedia became an important concept as the Web moved away from a largely textual layout to a graphical one. Many sites were competing to become true multimedia sites with a mixture of text, sound, images and videos.

Techopedia Explains Multimedia

Technically speaking, a video (several images run in succession) with sound qualifies as multimedia by itself. Moreover, now that the Web is capable of giving a true multimedia experience, the focus is on rich media – that is, multimedia with interactive elements.

In a very real sense, however, the Web still has a long way to go before its textual roots are left behind. Much of the media and multimedia on the Web is encased in text because this is still the primary method of navigation across the Web.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.