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Researchers at IBM have had a long history of innovation in image data processing, an innovation that has influenced international standards, such as JPEG and JBIG, and has also been used to create leading-edge technology for IBM products, such as printers, scanners, and other data processing equipment. However, video and audio data processing received little attention in IBM until the second half of the 1980s. It was then that multimedia emerged as an important technology in computer applications, particularly in personal computers. This technology, together with increasingly powerful computers, high-capacity storage media such as CD-ROM, and improved network capacity, forms the basis for the long-predicted convergence of the computer, communications, and consumer industries.
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