16 June was the 25th Birthday of GIFs, according to Fast Company. We missed it, but we’re going to make up for the oversight.
“Choosy programmers choose GIF,” quipped Steve Wilhite of CompuServe, after he created the GIF image compression file format in 1987. It allowed for sequenced upload delays necessary for embedded animations. There’s a nice history of the now ubiquitous .gif on Daily Dot.
UPDATE: In the interview with Daily Dot (linked above) Steve Wilhite said that he thought the first .GIF animation was of an airplane. This is one of the first that I ever captured, several computers ago:
Here it is, all blowed up, in 5 frames of pixellated glory:
Is this the first .gif animation Wilhite was referring to? I don’t know, but it’s a contender.
[Update 2: Fixed broken link to Daily Dot.]