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PICT - Macintosh Graphics Files

PICT files are the Macintosh native picture format. This format describes the bitmap and object oriented graphics-file formats used by the Macintosh computer to exchange picture between applications. PICT images are storable as a Macintosh resource of type 'PICT' or as a data file of type 'PICT'. The object oriented file contains all the quick draw commands used to draw the image on the Macintosh screen (Font: Size, Style, type; Lines, circles, BitMaps, etc...).

If QuickTime is install, JPEG compression/decompression is supported. PICT files containing only one bitmap are also supported under Windows using QuickTime for Windows.

Other things to note about Macintosh PICT files:

PICT Format

PICT 1 format:

PICT 2 format:

See: Inside Macintosh, programmers reference for details of the basic PICT 2 format.

The book Inside Macintosh, Volume 5, contains a description of PICT.
The Macintosh Technical note #27 also describes PICT.
The book Inside Machintosh: Quicktime, describes PICT-JPEG.

You can obtain the Apple documentation in electronic form from:

Apple Developer's WWW pages (Internet Link).

PICT file Compression

Run-length encoded (RLE) formats for compressing bitmaps. With QuickTime V2.0 installed, PICT file may also contain JPEG compressed bitmap images. QuickTime comes with routines for compressing PICT files using JPEG compression or any other QuickTime compressor. Any application that uses PICT files on Macintosh with QuickTime installed can de-compress these files. JPEGView a free application can translate JPEG file to/from JPEG compressed PICT files.

QuickTake digital Camera

Image created with Apple's QuickTake digital camera require the QuickTake(TM) Image extension and QuickTime install on there computer to decompress them. So be careful when saving QuickTake image for othe people, and save them in TIFF or non-QuickTake format from the QuickTake software.

Macintosh File Type of: PICT

Use CTC Drag & Drop application to set the type to `PICT' or use Change Type and Creator Contentual Menu Manager plugin.

MS-DOS extension: .PCT

Install QuickTime for Windows to use or convert PCT files under Windows.
Updated: 19 Oct 2002, By RMF