Puneet Varma (Editor)

Graphics library

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A graphics library is a program library designed to aid in rendering computer graphics to a monitor. This typically involves providing optimized versions of functions that handle common rendering tasks. This can be done purely in software and running on the CPU, common in embedded systems, or being hardware accelerated by a GPU, more common in PCs. By employing these functions, a program can assemble an image to be output to a monitor. This relieves the programmer of the task of creating and optimizing these functions, and allows them to focus on building the graphics program. Graphics libraries are mainly used in video games and simulations.

Some APIs use Graphics Library (GL) in their name, notably OpenGL and WebGL.


  • MIT X Window System
  • Display PostScript
  • Apple Macintosh QuickDraw
  • Cairo (graphics)
  • Clutter
  • DirectX (a library created by Microsoft, to run under Windows operating systems and 'Direct' Xbox)
  • emWin An Embedded Graphics Library
  • FLTK A GUI Toolkit and Graphics Library
  • Mesa 3D (a library that implements OpenGL)
  • MiniGL (a range of incomplete OpenGL implementations)
  • Open Inventor
  • Openskia
  • Qt A cross-platform application framework
  • SFML
  • Simple DirectMedia Layer
  • Allegro
  • Skia Graphics Library
  • SIGIL (Sound, Input, and Graphics Integration Library)
  • References

    Graphics library Wikipedia