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Scalable Vector Graphics

Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) is an XML specification and file format for describing two-dimensional vector graphics, both static and animated.

SVG can be purely declarative or may include scripting.

Images can contain hyperlinks using outbound simple XLinks.

It is an open standard created by the World Wide Web Consortium's SVG Working Group.

SVG was developed during the period 1999–2000 by a group of companies within the W3C after the competing standards PGML (developed from Adobe's PostScript) and VML (developed from Microsoft's RTF), both submitted to W3C in 1998, could not gain enough support for ratification.

SVG was initially based on both those formats.

A vector image can be scaled indefinitely without loss of image quality, while the bitmap cannot.

SVG allows three types of graphic objects:

Vector graphics (see Outline image, at right)

Raster graphics (see Bitmap image, at right)

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More in SVG on Wikipedia (opens in new tab)

Désiré Athow
Contributor

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.