Data Compression


Survey Formats


Compression Methods

Data Formats

Run Length Encoding

General Principle

Control Characters

RLE for Image Data





Run Length Encoding (RLE)

The Run Length Encoding takes advantage of the fact that certain data sets contain sequences of recurring, identical symbols. Those repetitions will be replaced by declaring the length of the sequence.

Simple graphic data characterized by large parts of the same colour are the most important field of application for this compression method. Typical data types would be sketches, diagrams or technical drawings, for example. RLE procedures are part of BMP, TIFF or PCX sub-formats.

RLE is one of the simplest data compression procedures and requires only a small amount of hardware and software resources. Therefore RLE was introduced very early and a large range of derivates have been developed up to now.

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Data Compression Example B uncompressed with 16 colours General Principle of RLE