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I was looking at the post over at Nice scientific pictures show off. And people have created some abselutly awesome pictures and animations.

That got me wondering, what is the best format to compile an animation to? If you have a pdf viewer that support animations they can easily be shown there, but many pdf viewers cannot do this.

I looked around for an answer, but most answers are about how to put the animation within a pdf document. I also couldn't find any answers to what might be a good format, or wether you can compile to formats such as gif.

Thus what is the best format for tikz animations and how do you do this?

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    As long as FlashPlayer plugin is maintained for web browsers, I would convert multipage PDF animations to SWF, as SWF keeps the vector graphics nature. An open-source tool exists for this purpose: pdf2swf from swftools.org – AlexG Oct 27 '17 at 15:05
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    these are .gif files; you'll find the instructions at various points on the site, for example: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/116128/… – cmhughes Oct 27 '17 at 15:16
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    Gif is of inferior quality than SWF because it is compressed bitmap which does not scale well. – AlexG Oct 27 '17 at 16:42
  • thanks @AlexG, guess I was just bad at googeling. However flash is currently being closed down. What will be the best format after this happens? (a vector animation, but not in pdf format?) – Thorbjørn E. K. Christensen Oct 27 '17 at 16:44
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    As animated SVG is also dead, HTML5 will win the race. However, I don't know of an open-source or free conversion tool. HTML5 animation is JavaScript driven drawing on the <canvas> element. – AlexG Oct 27 '17 at 16:52

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