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Icon sizes: 256x256, 128x128, 48x48, 32x32, 24x24, 20x20, 16x16, 512x512
File formats: ICO, GIF, PNG, BMP

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What Are PNG Icons?

A number of independent vendors are supplying custom icons in sizes and resolutions common to certain computer platforms. The article explains what icons are, how they are used and implemented in various platforms, and what standards exist for Windows icons, Mac icons, and PNG icons.

Computer icons are incorporated into any graphical user interface. Icons are small pictograms of standardized resolutions that depict objects, actions, and symbols. In graphical user interfaces, icons are used as a quicker, more intuitive way to communicate with the user. Icons representing standard elements of a user interface are better visible than text, can be recognized faster, and are easier for new computer users.

Originally introduced in 1970 by the Xerox Research Center and widely deployed by the Mac OS and Microsoft Windows platforms, icons make computer novices feel more comfortable with computer systems, learn quicker and interact more efficiently. Icons can be employed to replace or supplement text commands. Commonly used in menus, toolbars, on buttons and in new ribbon-style user interfaces, icons have come a long way from the original concept.

There are several graphic formats for storing icons. The Windows systems store Windows icons in the platform-dependent ICO format. Mac OS systems use Mac icons in their specific formats, while Unix-based systems use PNG icons for most applications. As such, icon editing software is generally available for the Windows and Apple platforms, while Unix users can design their icons with just about any graphic editor.

Generally speaking, icons are square pictograms that come in a variety of standard sizes and color resolutions. Most systems use icon sizes of 16x16 to 128x128 pixels, while some platforms readily accept icons as large as 512x512 pixels. The big 512x512 pixel icons were first employed in Mac OS Leopard.

Pixel dimensions of all icons are operating system dependent. For example, Windows icons are specified as pictures in 16 and 256-color gammas as well as True Color pictures with alpha channel. Windows icons are supplied in standard resolutions of 16x16, 32x32, and 48x48 pixels. Windows Vista defines new standards for Windows icons, including icons in resolutions of up to 256x256 pixels in True Color only. Optionally, icons of 128x128 and 512x512 pixels are supported. Interestingly, the high-resolution Windows Vista icons are stored in compressed PNG format instead of Windows ICO used in older versions of Windows and for lower resolution icons. Other systems such as Windows Mobile can use standard icons of other sizes, e.g. 24x24 pixels.

Numerous independent vendors are offering custom icons. Aha-Soft offers a wide selection of Windows icons, Mac icons, and PNG icons in all sizes and resolutions common to those systems. The company sells royalty-free icons individually and in matching sets incorporating icons drawn a common style or theme.

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You can buy individual icons to suit your needs. Each icon is $1 when purchased individually.

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Download Large Crystal Icons
24x24 Free Button Icons 24x24 Free Button Icons collection contains everything that are necessery for your web project or software toolbar.

24x24 Free Toolbar Icons 24x24 Free Toolbar Icons collection contains all the images that are necessery for your web page or software toolbar.

32x32 Free Design Icons 32x32 Free Design Icons collection has all the images that are required for your web site or software toolbar.

Perfect Business Icons Enhance your accounting or business- related application with instantly available professional Perfect Business Icons. More then two hundred of professionally designed and carefully drawn icons are provided.

Standard Software Icons Standard Software Icons is pack of colorful software icons meticulously created by professional artists. This set is an ideal choice for navigation menus and toolbars of any type.