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Established Date: Jan. 1, 1977
The fourth RGBA information channel that contains 8-bit grayscale values used in compositing. It was co-developed by Ed Catmull and Alvy Ray Smith at the New York Institute of Technology in 1977. Why "alpha?" According to Smith, image composition uses simple linear interpretation in which the Greek letter "A" (alpha) controls the amount of interpolation between two images.