Raphaël: a JavaScript API for SVG


The first time I saw SVG in 2000–2001, I was blown away by the power it has, and the simplicity of the language, but I was also dismayed that I couldn't really make use of it, because browsers didn't support it. These days all major browsers (with one Important Exception) support SVG to a reasonable extent. This means we can now start to play with it and make use of it on some sites, but Flash is still more popular for vector graphics amongst front end developers. Why? Because few people know how to work with SVG; far more people coding dynamic applications are much more familiar with JavaScript (or ActionScript).

To solve both the compatibility issues, and the knowledge gap, I decided to create Raphaël. This is a JavaScript library that provides an API for manipulating SVG, and SVG support for Internet Explorer. It achieves the latter by emulating SVG in Internet Explorer using VML. You don’t need to know SVG to work with this library, but SVG knowledge is certainly a bonus, so I'd suggest you get up to speed with the basics if you find the time.


with one Important Exception

I wonder who that one Important Exception is

One Reply to “Raphaël: a JavaScript API for SVG”

Leave a Reply