Progressive refinement is a well-established approach to overcome bandwidth limitations in mobile environments. One outstanding benefit compared to relates approaches is the provision of meaningful content previews during data transfer or processing. Although highly relevant and useful, however, related literature only addresses the
support of this functionality by certain communication stages or proposes systems for specific use cases. No publication is concerned with an abstraction or formalization of progression or takes advantage of its beneficial properties in other application fields.
In this publication we want to give a general view to progression, its key concepts, attributes, and common data processing pipeline. Thereby, we abstract from specifics and usage scenarios in order to simplify the development of new algorithms and schemes and to derive guidelines for its general application. To show that progression is also able to solve problems beyond limited bandwidth, this contribution is also concerned with the introduction of new application areas. The novel idea of content-oriented refinement allows emphasizing important image regions by an animated tour-through-the-data. It will also be shown that progressive representations are a very effective means for device adaptation. Both applications are motivated, discussed, and illustrated by