The next time you’re searching for clip art to spice up a presentation (or, let's be honest, take up space in a school project), you’ll have an updated set of images to choose from. That’s because Microsoft has retired its dated clip art gallery and is instead using Bing to supply images within Office documents.
The change came about because use of Office’s image library has been declining year over year as customers rely more on search engines to find pictures.
That said, Bing Image Search will provide Office users with higher quality images that are more up-to-date. An example of this would be searching for the term “cellphone.” With clip art, users would be presented with old-school brick phones a la Zach Morris.
Bing, on the other hand, provides modern images with a bit more variety. Best yet, the search uses a copyright filter based on the Creative Commons licensing system so any images it presents can be used, shared and modified for both personal and commercial use.
It’s also worth pointing out that it’s possible to disable the filter to show all images but keep in mind, they might not be suitable for commercial use.
Clip art is just one of many Internet icons do disappear as of late. On October 31, Microsoft shut down MSN Messenger once and for all, bringing an end to its 15-year run. The service was sparsely used in its latter days although there once was a time when it was one of the most popular messaging clients alongside AOL Instant Messenger. Winamp would have suffered a similar fate if not for a last-minute acquisition by Radionomy early this year.