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1.1 What is the OpenGL Graphics System?

OpenGL (for ``Open Graphics Library'') is a software interface to graphics hardware. The interface consists of a set of several hundred procedures and functions that allow a programmer to specify the objects and operations involved in producing high-quality graphical images, specifically color images of three-dimensional objects.

Most of OpenGL requires that the graphics hardware contain a framebuffer. Many OpenGL calls pertain to drawing objects such as points, lines, polygons, and bitmaps, but the way that some of this drawing occurs (such as when antialiasing or texturing is enabled) relies on the existence of a framebuffer. Further, some of OpenGL is specifically concerned with framebuffer manipulation.

David Blythe
Sat Mar 29 02:23:21 PST 1997