40 - Glossary


This is the Greek letter beta. When the term beta is used to designate software, it almost always means that the software is not in final release form, but is undergoing testing and potentially further development. This is usually a software development stage undertaken in preparation for an official public release, and quite often is also hinted at by major software version numbers of 0. For instance, software designated with Version 0.23 is very likely a pre-release version and may be in the beta stage of development. Alpha (Α) is generally used to designate software that is so new and unfinished that it isn't ready for any kind of public release.


Audio Frequency Shift Keying - a data transfer mode using audio encoding commonly used in radio operations. With regard to iToolBox, image transfer using AFSK ("SSTV" and "FAX") is particularly relevant.

  Aspect Ratio

This refers to the ratio of the length of one side of an image to another. When we talk about aspect ratio in photography, we often use it as a shorthand to refer to specific portrait sizes common in print applications. For instance, it is common to create prints in a 5" by 7" format, as photo frames intended for displaying photos on the wall or desktop are often made in this size. So when we say we're going to "crop to 5x7", what we mean is that the resulting cropped image will have the same shape as such an image — that is, the ratio of the length of the sides will be the same as that of a 5" by 7" portrait.


ATO is an atomic (meaning, contains a single image) image format that iToolBox produces which contains far more information than JPG or PNG images do. It is a 64-bit image format, and so maintains deep color and transparency information on the images it is used for. In addition, it can contain image notations that are anchored to indicated regions that can be used with web image gallery software to provide a much more informative and useful experience for the visitors to the web gallery.


CMY is the common abbreviation of Cyan, Yellow and Magenta. iToolBox can do color separations for you.


CMYK is the common abbreviation of Cyan, Yellow, Magenta and Black. iToolBox can do color separations for you.


This is an operation that places pixels into an image. Most operations simply modify the pixels that were already there using their own values; a compose operation either brings in pixels from an entirely different image (merge, for instance) or generates them algorithmically, as with the range fill operator.


CPU stands for Central Processing Unit. It is the "brain" that performs many, or all, of the computations within a computer.


DPI stands for Dots Per Inch. This expresses the relationship between the pixels in the image and output of that image, often on paper, in the real world. For instance, If an image is set to 100 DPI, and it is 700 pixels wide and 1000 pixels high, then it will print out seven inches wide and ten inches tall.

Sometimes it's not quite that simple. Images actually have two DPI settings; one for the horizontal dot size relationship to output, and one for the vertical dot size relationship to output. If these values are the same (as is normally the case), then the pixel is square; that is, it's exactly as wide as it is high. But there have been cases where this was not true. Watch out for those.

X and Y DPI settings in iToolBox


DSLR stands for Digital Single Lens Reflex, a designation for (usually) high-end cameras with large, high-quality sensors and interchangeable lens systems. iToolBox can load and process RAW files from many DSLRs at full spatial resolution and the DSLR's native bit depth, potentially resulting in ultra-high quality output of viewable images.


ELX is an atomic (meaning, contains a single image) layered image format that iToolBox produces which contains far more information than JPG or PNG images do. It is a 64-bit image format, and so maintains deep color and transparency information on the images it is used for. It can represent images with more than one layer of pixel information. In addition, it can contain image notations that are anchored to indicated regions that can be used with web image gallery software to provide a much more informative and useful experience for the visitors to the web gallery.


A severely flawed meta data format. You can read all about it at Wikipedia, or there's a short discussion here in this document.


The filesystem is the organization your computer presents to you which indicates and manages where and how all of your files are stored. iToolBox's major interactions with your computer's filesystem are in these areas:
  1. Reading and writing image files
  2. Writing JSON files for use with image gallery software
  3. Loading and saving its own configuration when starting and closing.


GHz stands for GigaHertz. In the context of computers, GHz is one (of many) indicators of just how fast the system CPU can process instructions.


GPS stands for Global Positioning System. This is a constellation of satellites that orbits the earth, providing location information to within a few feet. This information is often found stored in EXIF information contained within some image formats.


This is the base sixteen number system, often simply called hex. In hex, instead of numbers going from 0 to 9 as we are most accustomed to in base ten, they go from 0 to 9 and then proceed to continue on from A through F, making a total of sixteen digit values rather than ten — hence base sixteen rather than base ten:

0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, A, B, C, D, E, F

That's a count from zero to fifteen if we think of it in base ten. Thinking a little more about base ten, when you reach the highest digit available (9), then you naturally get a one in the next column for the next value. In base ten, 10 means ten, the same as the name of the base; it makes sense, because ten comes after nine.

In base sixteen, when you reach fifteen with the highest digit available (F), you still get a one in the next column for the next value, but now 10 means sixteen, again the same as the number of the base. And again, it makes sense, because sixteen comes after fifteen. It's just counting, same as is done in base ten, but simply with sixteen values to count with instead of ten.

all number bases work this way. In every number base, the digits available go up to, but do not reach, the number of the base, and 10 is always the same value as the name of the base itself. So for base two, 10 equals two; for base eight, 10 equals eight, for base ten, 10 equals ten, for base sixteen, 10 equals sixteen, and so on.

Hexadecimal is a very convenient numbering system for working with computers, as two hex digits can represent numbers from zero to two hundred and fifty-five. That range is exactly the range an 8-bit byte of memory can represent. Likewise, four hex digits fit perfectly into a 16-bit, two-byte number, eight hex digits fit perfectly into a 32-bit, four-byte number, and so forth.

As hex specifically relates to iToolBox in the context of graphics colors, two hex digits represent the full range of each of the RGB components in a 24-bit (3-byte) color space. Four hex digits represent the full range of each of the RGB components in a 48-bit (6-byte) color space, which is what iToolBox works with.

Conversion from an 8-bit color to a 16-bit color is done by duplicating the 8-bit value, as shown here:

00 = 0000
07 = 0707
10 = 1010
D3 = D3D3

Transparency works exactly the same way.

You can learn more about hexadecimal here.


HSV is the common abbreviation of Hue, Saturation and Value.


HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. It is the language that web pages are written in.


An intervalometer is a device that fires the shutter on the camera, usually more than once, at specified intervals. Intervalometers are often used to create time-lapse image sequences such as flowers opening, clouds moving across the sky, shadow progressions during the course of the day and similar slowly-changing event sequences.


This is a scripting language that is typically embedded in web pages in order to make the pages perform various functions.


JP(E)G stands for Joint Photographic (Experts) Group. It is an image format with two notable features: First, it can create very small image files, which speed up file transfers on the Internet and so are very commonly used for that purpose (a good thing.) Second, JPG images lose significant amounts of image data in the process of making those smaller files, so it is a terrible image format to store important images in. It is strongly advised that you do not use JPG unless you really have a need to create a small, low-quality, non-archival image. For the web, PNG is a much better choice for quality image representation and storage unless you have bandwidth issues you simply must address.


JSON stands for JavaScript Object Notation. This is somewhat deceptive, as JSON can be (and often is) used in, with, and for many other languages than Javascript. JSON is a text format that allows various data to be represented in a structured way such that another program can read it, understand it, and in the end, utilize it to do something. Hopefully useful. For instance, iToolBox can generate JSON files that contain information usable by image gallery software to display notes on the content of an image for the gallery viewers.


LAN stands for Local Area Network. It usually means a connection to machines and devices on a network restricted to access within your business or home, and not available to the Internet, which is properly described as a WAN.


Short for luminance, this is a value obtained thusly:

luma = (red x .31) + (green * .59) + (blue * .11)

These ratios are similar to those a typical human eye uses when assessing the brightness of red, green and blue.


Another name for OS X (MacOS) dreamed up by the useless marketing people at Apple. Because having huge brand name recognition wasn't a good thing, apparently.

  OS X

Stands for Operating System Ten. This is Apple's operating system for their Macintosh series of computers. Recently (and pointlessly) changed to MacOS.


PNG stands for Portable Network Graphics. It is a reasonably capable image format that (among other things) can save 24-bit images without loss, unlike, for instance, JPG images.


RAM stands for Random Access Memory. This is where programs and data are kept inside your computer to be processed by your CPU.


RAW is a designation given to an image file produced by a camera that contains high resolution pixels, that is, pixels with more than 8-bits of brightness information, where the file's pixel data is (usually) close to, or exactly as, the sensor produced it. Rather than generate a final image right from the camera, that task is left to the software loading the image, in this case, iToolBox. This is as opposed to a fully processed image, usually JPEG, produced for casual (and not always particularly picky) camera users. So RAW files contain camera exposure information and similar data that is used by iToolBox to properly prepare the RAW file for viewing and editing.


RGB is the common abbreviation of Red, Green and Blue.


URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator. This is a way to specify a file on the local machine or on a network. By network, that can mean your local area network or out on the Internet.


UTC stands for Universal Coordinated Time. UTC is an unusual abbreviation in that the order of the letters in UTC do not match the order of the first letters of the terminology. UTC is the date and time at longitude 0°, the meridian intersecting Greenwich, England. UTC is used worldwide as a standard date and time reference. Its use eliminates questions of time zones; it also offers some convenience, as UTC can be more simply converted to local time than one local time can be converted to another.


VM stands for Virtual Machine. This is a software system that provides for running a synthetic computer under the supervision of the main operating system on your actual computer. You can learn more about this here.


WAN stands for Wide Area Network. It usually means a connection to the Internet at large, including the WWW.


WWW stands for the World Wide Web — usually just referred to as "the web." This is distinct from a LAN.

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