SVG files are associated with vector graphics and the programs that create them. The graphics are used for a variety of different publications, articles, web page elements, and hard copy media. Within the last few years this type of file format was standardized by W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) and is now used as the primary format for displaying vector graphics in the digital environment.
SVG stands for Scalable Vector Graphics, which means that SVG images do not lose their quality if you resize them. SVG files are open standard and contain data and images associated with two-dimensional vector graphics. Every element in the file is capable of being animated, which makes it a primary competitor for Flash. SVG integrates easily with other W3C standards, such as DOM (Document Object Model) and XSL (Extensible Stylesheet Language), and also defines the graphics in XML format.
SVG files are also very versatile and can be easily searched, scripted, indexed, or compressed and can be printed in high quality resolution format.
How to Open SVG Files
In terms of cross platform capability you can view SVG files using any web browser that supports SVG. This includes Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, Google Chrome, and Opera. If you have an older browser version, it is necessary to deploy a plugin such as Adobe SVG Viewer to open and view SVG files. SVG Viewer is available as a free download from the Adobe website.
If you use Windows or Mac OS X, you can open and edit SVG files using Adobe CS6 Illustrator, Professional, or InDesign. This version of the program was just released and is quite expensive; however, if you have money to invest, it is well worthwhile. You can also use Inkscape which works with both Windows and Mac-based PCs.
Other programs that will open SVG files for Windows include Microsoft Visio, CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6, CAD SoftTools AB Viewer, and Serif DrawPlus X45. There are also a variety of programs available for download that will help you convert SVG files to another format for use with compatible applications.
To open and edit SVG files using the Linux operating system, you can use GIMP which is available as a free download from the GIMP website, KOffice Artwork, Kolourpaint, or Inkscape. To convert SVG files in Linux, you can use Apache Batik or ImageMagick.
You can also open, edit, or create SVG files using any text editing program; however, it is easier to use an image editing program to create SVG files.