Selecting An Image

Before you enter a URL (web address) for your avatar image, you should carefully consider a few things.

To begin with, the maximum displayed size of your avatar is only 100 x 100 pixels. The impact of this is as follows: If you select an image LARGER than 100 x 100 pixels, the board will re-size it to 100 x 100. Therefore, a large image is still truly large in file size, even though it appears to be small, thus making for a longer load time for those users with slow connections.

Additionally, if you choose an image that is not hosted under your control (ie: your own website), that image could be deleted by it's owner at any time, leaving you without an avatar. While I am not suggesting piracy or theft of intellectual property, any image you wish to display as your avatar should be saved and uploaded to your own personal webspace, which almost every internet service provider makes available for its customers. You might ask, "Where do you post these images if you do not have personal webspace?" Well, we'll discuss that in the next section.

The resolution of the image also impacts the file size, and for general-purpose display of images on the internet, 72 dots per inch (DPI) will suffice.

One last thing to consider is the actual file size of the image. If you have photo-editing software, you might wish to save your image as a *.GIF or *.JPG, as these types make for a small file size. Steer clear of bitmaps (*.BMP) - they are extremely bloated, and will take longer to download, in general.

To recap, if you have the ability:
   1) Set image resolution to 72 DPI.
   2) Set image size to 100x100 pixels.
   3) Save image in *.GIF or *.JPG format.

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