After working on my SVG rendering library (resvg) for the past 6 years, and working closely with SVG for the past 10, I've thought that this is enough time to have some interesting insight worth sharing. And there are definitely a lot to talk about.

When people think SVG, they usually imagine something like this:

<svg viewBox="0 0 200 200" xmlns="">
    <rect x="20" y="20" width="160" height="160" fill="green"/>

A very simple, user-friendly, XML-based vector file format.

And while SVG is indeed designed to be easy to read and write by a human, parsing and rendering of it are notoriously hard for a machine. The SVG spec is 20 years old and there are still no libraries that support even 80% of it. Yes, after 20 years one still cannot just render an SVG.

Whenever I receive bug reports for my SVG library, people often use the phrase "my SVG isn't rendering correctly". Which cracks me up every time. There is no such thing as a correctly rendered SVG. As soon as you start using "advanced" features such as text, filters, or, God forbid, animations - it would simply not work. Never. And even if you will manage to make it work, as soon as you try a different render - it will fall apart again.

The idea behind this "book" is to answer the popular question of "how hard can it be?". A reader expected to have some prior knowledge about SVG, but it should be a fun read either way.

I'm trying my best not to fall into a rant, but when it comes to SVG - it's really hard.

NOTE: English is not my native language, so this "book" will probably be hard to digest. And this is on top of the complexity of the subject itself.

NOTE: This "book" isn't finished and still work in progress.