SVG Working Group Charter

The mission of the SVG Working Group, part of the Graphics Activity, is to continue the evolution of Scalable Vector Graphics as a format and a platform, and enhance the adoption and usability of SVG in combination with other technologies.

Join the SVG Working Group.

End date 30 April 2010
Confidentiality Proceedings are public
Initial Chairs Erik Dahlström (Opera Software ASA),
Andrew Emmons (W3C Invited Experts)
Team Contact
(FTE %: 30)
Doug Schepers (W3C/Keio)
Usual Meeting Schedule Teleconferences: Twice Weekly
Face-to-face: 3-4 per year


This group will produce incremental, market-driven revisions to the SVG format, suitable for both desktop and mobile systems, and will maintain and clarify existing SVG specifications.

Native implementation of SVG in desktop browsers has increased dramatically, with substantial support in Opera, Mozilla Firefox, and WebKit/Safari, as well as browser plug-ins by smaller vendors. With this increased interest, the SVG specifications have had greater scrutiny and more critical feedback regarding features and consistency. Response to market pressures and the need to cover gaps in underlying technologies resulted in a broad feature set for SVG 1.2 Tiny, which drew criticism. In response, the SVG Working Group has factored out reusable functionality to the WebAPI Working Group for use in other specifications, and will continue to improve its activities in the following ways:

In order to meet the goal of more timely specifications, work will continue on modularization of feature sets. Additional goals of modularization are to ease incremental implementation and specification review, to allow greater reuse of existing features in other specifications (e.g. CSS or HTML), and to address requirements identified in the SVG 1.2 timeframe that could not be fully realized in the SVG 1.2 Tiny specification. Several modules are planned for publication, including:

In particular, SVG will consider the applicability of enhancements to the core language to both desktop and resource-limited devices, such as mobile devices and printers.

To allow more advanced design features and efficient decorative effects, there will be attention paid to new stroking and filling options, including pseudo-3D (2.5D) effects by means of new gradients, filters, and non-affine transformations, with authoring tips for their use.

The work on SVG will move toward more widespread implementation and greater interoperability, in multiple browsers across multiple platforms, and created by multiple authoring or generation tools. See the activity statement for the overall goals and rationale of this activity area.

In order to ensure that the language meets the needs of the community, including designers and casual authors in addition to developers, the SVG WG will engage with the SVG Interest Group, which will have a lower barrier of entry and fewer responsibilities than the SVG WG itself. This charter will accomodate the creation of new specification modules in order to address the needs raised by the reports of the SVG IG and workshops.

The scope of this charter will include the creation of a new version of the SVG specification that improves on the core SVG language, upon which the individual module extensions may be attached. The details of this new version will depend upon the input of SVG WG members and the needs outlined by the SVG Interest Group.

Success Criteria

Out of Scope

There are several technologies closely related to SVG, but which are under the purview of other activities within W3C, and are detailed under Dependencies and Liaisons.

Additionally, several features that originated in the SVG specification, but which are not of exclusive use to SVG have been moved to other Working Groups, or been superseded by other work in W3C. Evaluation of the status of this work will continue, to make best use of W3C resources. Consequently, this charter will drop items from the SVG Working Group's previous charter, including (but not limited to):

  • sXBL specification, superceded by the XBL2 specification
  • Element Traversal, now in the charter of the WebAPI WG
  • Testing and completion of DOM 3 Events and DOM 3 XPath specifications, now in the charter of the WebAPI WG
  • REX (see PAG Report)


The working group will deliver at least the following:

Recommendation-Track Deliverables

Other Deliverables

  • Comprehensive implementation test suite for each specification
  • Implementation and interoperability reports (if resources are available)
  • Validation tools through collaboration with W3C Team
  • Updated Accessibility Note
  • Tutorial or primer resources (in conjunction with SVG Interest Group)
  • Reviews of other specifications that impact SVG


Specification transition estimates and other milestones.

Note: The group will document significant changes from this initial schedule on the group home page.
Specification FPWD LC CR PR Rec
Compositing February 2008 July 2008 August 2008 February 2009 May 2009
Filters May 2007 March 2008 May 2008 October 2008 February 2009
Gradients June 2008 November 2008 January 2009 February 2009 June 2009
Layout Requirements and Use Cases May 2008 September 2008 - - -
Layout December 2008 July 2009 September 2009 November 2009 February 2010
Masking and Clipping July 2008 December 2008 February 2009 May 2009 July 2009
Media Access Events October 2006 January 2008 March 2008 October 2008 December 2008
Paint Servers June 2008 November 2008 January 2009 February 2009 June 2009
Print May 2007 January 2008 March 2008 October 2008 December 2008
Transformations June 2008 November 2008 January 2009 February 2009 June 2009
Vector Effects September 2008 January 2009 March 2009 October 2009 December 2009
WebFonts June 2008 December 2008 February 2009 May 2009 July 2009
SVG 1.1 Full 2nd Edition - - - - March 2008
SVG 1.2 Tiny December 2003 March 2006 August 2006 May 2008 October 2008
SVG 1.2 Full Modular November 2008 April 2009 July 2009 December 2009 June 2010

Timeline View Summary

  • Compositing: May 2009
  • Filters: February 2009
  • Layout Requirements and Use Cases: September 2008
  • Layout: February 2010
  • Masking and Clipping: July 2009
  • Media Access Events: December 2008
  • Paint Servers: June 2009
  • Print: December 2008
  • Vector Effects: December 2009
  • WebFonts: July 2009
  • SVG 1.1 Full 2nd Edition: March 2008
  • SVG 1.2 Tiny: October 2008
  • SVG 1.2 Full Modular: June 2010

Dependencies and Liaisons


Synchronized Multimedia (SYMM) Working Group
SVG uses SMIL Animation, audio and video, the 'switch' element, and the timing model from SMIL 2.1.
The SVG WG has designed several APIs that supplement and extend DOM, and has asked the WebAPI WG to publish more generalized versions of them for use with all specifications; in addition, the SVG 1.2 Tiny specification has a dependency upon DOM3 Events, specifically the key and mousewheel events. Additionally, the SVG WG will strive to align its server communication methods with the XMLHttpRequest specification.
XML Core
SVG uses the XML, Namespaces in XML, XLink, and xml:id specifications.


Contribute to and follow the lead of the WICD specification to synergize SVG with other W3C languages to form a more effective whole solution for the Web.
Work closely with the HTML WG to provide integrated and consistent authoring experiences, and to explore how SVG can be used with HTML as well as XML-based languages like XHTML. In addition, form a joint task force with the HTML WG to specify the Canvas API, should the need arise.
Continue to align with the XHTML2 WG to develop and integrate modular XML-based features.
WAI Protocols and Formats Working Group
Communicate about needs of accessibility in SVG UAs and language and extensibility features. Work with WAI to develop appropriate ontologies for the ARIA specificications.
Coordinate on styling and device aware layout.
Device Independence Activity
Meet the needs of a wide spectrum of devices.
Ubiquitous Web Applications
Integrate UWA WG specified criteria relevant to SVG, e.g. APIs exposing device capabilities.
Internationalization Activity
Ensure SVG meets needs for internationalized text and content adaption.
Coordinate on API and feature level with OpenVG specification.
Coordinate at the API and feature level with JSR-226, JSR-287 and JSR-290 specifications.
Ensure compatibility for mobile content formats.
Provide guidance for integration and compatible extension of SVG.

Furthermore, SVG Working Group expects to follow these W3C Recommendations:


To be successful, the SVG Working Group is expected to have 10 or more active participants for its duration. Effective participation to SVG Working Group is expected to consume one work day per week for each participant; two days per week for editors. The SVG Working Group will allocate also the necessary resources for building Test Suites for each specification (some effort for which may also come from members of the SVG Interest Group Test Suite Task Force) and maintaining existing specifications (including publication of errata).

Each organization may have up to two participants in the SVG Working Group for purposes of technical discussion, issue resolution, voting, and other issues of process, but may additionally allocate any number of participants for dedicated tasks, such as creating or maintaining the test suites, or providing tutorial materials, subject to member review and approval.

Participants are reminded of the Good Standing requirements of the W3C Process.


Feedback to this group may be sent to the public mailing list www-svg@w3.org (archive), or submitted to the public issue tracking system available from the feedback page. This group will post minutes to, and primarily conduct its technical work on, the mailing list public-svg-wg@w3.org (public archive).

Information about the group, including news and links to specifications and membership, is available from the SVG WG Public page. Member-only information (contact details for face-to-face meetings, teleconferences, etc.) is available from the SVG WG Member page, and on the Member-only mailing list w3c-svg-wg@w3.org (member archive).

Decision Policy

As explained in the Process Document (section 3.3), this group will seek to make decisions when there is consensus. When the Chair puts a question and observes dissent, after due consideration of different opinions, the Chair should record a decision (possibly after a formal vote) and any objections, and move on.

This charter is written in accordance with Section 3.4, Votes of the W3C Process Document and includes no voting procedures beyond what the Process Document requires.

Patent Policy

This Working Group operates under the W3C Patent Policy (5 February 2004 Version). To promote the widest adoption of Web standards, W3C seeks to issue Recommendations that can be implemented, according to this policy, on a Royalty-Free basis.

For more information about disclosure obligations for this group, please see the W3C Patent Policy Implementation.

About this Charter

This charter for the SVG Working Group has been created according to section 6.2 of the Process Document. In the event of a conflict between this document or the provisions of any charter and the W3C Process, the W3C Process shall take precedence.

Please also see the previous charter for this group.

Doug Schepers <schepers@w3.org>, Chris Lilley <chris@w3.org>
$Revision: 1.17 $ of $Date: 2008/04/16 20:49:23 $

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