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Multimedia in entertainment and leisure

Multimedia and the arts

Many artists and musicians use multimedia to showcase their work and make it available to a wider audience.

  • Activity 1.4

Visit the ART21 and Tate websites to see how multimedia is used to display the exhibits.

Computer games

Computer games are very popular multimedia products. They can include anything from ‘shoot ’em up’ games or driving simulations to adventures in virtual worlds, such as Myst.

Multimedia games often feature the latest technology as manufacturers have to invest heavily in development to maintain sales.You can find games online and on CD and DVD, as well as games designed specifically for games modules such as the Sony PS2.

TALKING POINT 1.5 Choose some computer games and discuss how effective the use of multimedia is.

Multimedia devices

Multimedia is also now commonly found in everyday devices such as mobile phones and MP3 and DVD players. Many people like to be able to carry their media and information around with them and ‘portability’ is becoming increasingly important.

Multimedia on the move! Music, photos and video combined in one compact portable device

Investigating multimedia products

Features of a multimedia product

As you will have discovered by now, this ActiveBook uses different types of multimedia including video, audio, text, animation and images. How did the publishers decide which types to use? What should you consider when designing your own products?




Video is good for:

showing action taking you to different locations helping you to visualise a story or event.

Video is less suitable for:

scenes where there is little or no movement scenes where the action is very quick and hard to capture.

  • Activity 1.5

Open your ActiveBook and watch this video clip. Try to decide why video was used rather text or audio. How well do you think it works?

Figure 1.20


Audio is used extensively in multimedia products. Interviews, digital narratives and stories, commentaries and music are some examples. Can you think of any more?


It is often said that sound is more important than video in a multimedia product. Do you think that this is always true?


Still images, such as photographs, are great for websites, video, presentations and simulations. They can be good for:

getting across a message or telling a story, especially if the message has a strong emotional content creating a particular mood or atmosphere highlighting key points.

Figure 1.21

Still images can be linked together to create a movie. This is a technique often used by writers of documentaries and one you will find very useful.

Stills can have a dramatic impact



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