Run-length CompressionRun-length encoding ("RLE") compression is a method of compression which is very effective for reducing the size of bitmap files which contain large areas of solid color.
Run-length compression is ineffective (and may even produce larger file sizes) on photographs or other images which do not contain large areas of solid color.
To illustrate how run-length compression works imagine that we wish to store the following bitmap:
A simple way to do this would be to work along each horizontal row of pixels ("scanline"), and store the color of each. When we reach the end of row, we start the next.
Using this method (in other words, not compressing), we would store data like this:
White Blue White White White White White Blue
1XWhite 1XBlue 4Xwhite 1XBlue 1XWhite
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