Want more parts FAST? Allow Embedded PNG inside SVG


I know PNG doesn’t allow for high resolution scaling. But not all diagrams and designs need to be high resolution “scalable”! I’ve tested this with Inkscape and it works partially, but has bugs.

Creating the SVG:

  1. Open an existing part in inkscape
  2. Choose File>Import and select a PNG image of your target part. (hint, copy it from the datasheet).
  3. Scale the PNG into the SVG.
  4. Add SVG shapes overtop of each pin.
  5. Configure the SVG as you normally would in the XML.

I tested this and made a “PEACE IC” and it worked inside of the parts editor. It actually opened inside of Fritzing for a moment (I thought) but I can’t reproduce it (it’s buggy). See this file: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1-njqPoef5AWV9WX2ktcWlYU3c/view?usp=sharing

I have heard a lot of discussion from people that “we need more parts”. This solution doesn’t produce the shiny new parts that I guess the developers intended. But it would work, and it would be functional. Adding support for this would allow people to rapidly create high quality diagrams on parts not already created.


In the meantime, I’ve asked STM32 to provide me with their vector used in the datasheet… If they supply it to me I’ll make the Nucleo-144 Development board part.


But if Fritzing supported PNG graphics inside the SVG, then I wouldn’t have to talk to STM or draw my own parts.

It does (if not all that well). You can import png files in to Inkscape and convert them to vector then use them, although I usually find it easier to cut and paste the components I want. However that only gets you the breadboard svg (which is not inconsiderable), you still need to edit the fpz file and create the connectors in the resulting breadboard svg (although again, cut and paste from another svg is usually easier). There really isn’t a substitute for investing the time to learn to make parts if thats what you want to do though.


I just checked, it doesn’t look like there is any special function in Inkscape to “convert to vector”. I guess it would be under “path”. In which case there is a “trace bitmap” option that didn’t work for me either.

And I got the PNG to show up in the parts editor, but not the breadboard.

I understand that having SVG is the nicest way… But I’m serious when I say I don’t want to draw the entire board. If I have to, I’ll simply draw the two connector pieces on a blank PCB - which is more than enough for my purpose.

Yes Path/Trace Bitmap. You have to play around with the Trace Bitmap box because it’s complicated. Use the preview.