The AOL web browser is a modified version of MSIE. One of the modifications is that by default it "compresses" graphics (to an .ART format).

Problems when viewing images: Some image formats (.jpg, for example) are already compressed; when the AOL browser views them, it tries to compress them even more, causing distortion, warping, or very degraded image quality.

Problems when saving images: When you save images off web pages in the AOL browser, they (internally) stay in the .ART format - even if they have been saved with .gif or .jpg extensions. This means that only people using an MSIE web browser can view images on your page - anyone using any other browser cannot see them!

Too, there is no paint program that can read and edit .ART format directly, so if you are downloading images even for non-Web use, you likely won't be able to use them.

The solution is to turn off the compression feature. The steps for the latest version of the AOL browser, are:

- Members
- Preferences
- Web Graphics
Turn off Compress Graphics

The other solution is to download and install an un-modified version of MSIE or Netscape (my preference).
Abycat sent this suggestion if you don't want to turn compression off:  "Another way is to watch the file you save it as. When the "Save Picture" dialogue pops up, where it says "Save as type", click, and choose "Bitmap [*.bmp]". That way you can edit and use the image. If you want to post it on the Web, of course, it must be converted to .gif or .jpg. Hope this helps!  I attached a picture of how I do it."  [Remember:  If you have compression turned on, don't save images directly as .gif or .jpg - save them as  .bmp, then convert to .gif or .jpg.]