Topic 15- Multimedia



Multimedia means the use of many different types of media such as text, audio, still images, animation, video and different types of interactivity. 

Multimedia can be used in:

  • Education
  • Entertainment
  • Business
  • Society
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Multimedia in education

Multimedia in education:

  • Is used to help students who learn in different ways
  • Uses different media to get the message across
  • Brings subjects alive for students
  • Can be tutorial packages where students can learn a topic/ subject
  • Can be language packages using sound, video and animation
  • Can be interactive activities to test student understanding
  • Can use online tests to allow teachers to check on progress
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Multimedia in entertainment

Multimedia in entertainment can be useful as many people now spend more time on their computer than they do watching TV and are using social networking sites, chat rooms, online auctions, watching videos on YouTube, etc. There has been a huge change in the way people listen and access music and films. 

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Multimedia in business

Most businesses use multimedia in their websites to promote their business. They use a full range of multimedia features such as video, animation, sound and interactivity to advertise their goods or services. They may use multimedia in presentations given to customers and place adverts on the WWW. 

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Multimedia in society

Multimedia technology has many benefits for society, these include:

  • Flexibility to access information in many different forms
  • Interactivity whilst using the material
  • Integration of material from many different sources
  • Draws attention to particular material
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Memory is very important when dealing with multimedia technology. Having more memory will mean:

  • Applications run faster
  • More apps are able to run at the same time
  • You are able to move quickly between apps
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File size

Smallest to largest:

  • Bit (0 or 1) is the smallest unit of measurement
  • Byte is 8 bits
  • Kilobyte (KB) is 1000 bytes
  • Megabyte (MB) is 1000 kilobytes
  • Gigabyte (GB) is 1000 megabytes
  • Terabyte (TB) is 1000 gigabytes
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Multimedia hardware

Input devices include:

  • LCD/ plasma screen
  • Mouse
  • Graphics tablet
  • Touch-sensitive input devices
  • Microphone
  • Digital camera
  • Digital video camera
  • Web cam
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Backing storage and interactive components

Backing storage includes:

  • Magnetic hard drives (fixed or portable)
  • Optical disks (e.g. CD-ROM, DVD) 
  • Flash drives (pen drives, memory sticks, etc) 
  • Memory cards

Interactive components:

  • Key word
  • Quizzes
  • Questionnaires
  • Games 
  • Links
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Advantages and disadvantages


  • Offers interaction with the user- they can decide what they want to and in which order
  • Offers different ways of presenting information other than just reading text and looking at still images
  • Can suit different learning styles, for example, people who do not like reading can use animations or listen to audio
  • It enables learning through exploration, discovery and experience


  • It is very time consuming to produce a good piece of multimedia software and this can make some software expensive
  • It places high demands on the hardware so you often need to upgrade or buy new computers
  • Sometimes when you print a webpage the text is not formatted properly
  • It may not be accessible to certain groups of people who do not have high-spec computers and broadband internet
  • Playing computer games is mainly a solitary activity and this is bad for children who can become addicted
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