Definition of Digital Video

Digitization is the process of transforming images, text, or sound from analog form (a continuous stream of data that we can see or hear) into digital form (a series of binary data based on a sampling process) that we can save, organize, retrieve, and restore through electronic devices into perceptible surrogates of the original works.  Of the vast number of digital assets that are being created, still images, texts, motion pictures, and sound recordings predominate. Digital video, then, is video that has been created through the process of digitization.
 
These guidelines address digital video that is created through digital videography, conversion, or is acquired through a third party (e.g., via email attachment, purchase or license, downloading from the Web). Digital video are fundamentally different from their analog counterparts (VHS tape, 16mm film) because it reveals no meaning without the software and hardware that translates and renders it as moving images.  As binary code, we cannot find or identify digital video except through searchable terms (metadata) that we assign to it.  While these characteristics require us to alter how we approach browsing visual materials in digital form, digitization also brings with it the tremendous benefit of “random filing,” since we no longer have the worries that come with maintaining manual, physical files that are necessary for storing video/moving images in material form.