Definition: Translation or mapping of some data into a set of names or numbers to represent the data e.g. (a) colours can be encoded as coordinates in a specified colour space; (b) encoding fonts will map character codes to character names and so on. * The same data e.g. colour may be encoded in different ways, leading to the creation of different file formats: the aim is always to encode in such a way that the codes take up less memory than the data.

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