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GDI(Graphics Device Interface) The traditional programming interface (API) for output in Windows. When an application needs to display or print, it makes a call to a GDI function and sends it the parameters for the object that must be created. GDI in turn "draws" the object by sending commands to the screen and printer drivers, which actually render the images.
Starting with Windows XP, GDI+ added textures, gradients, alpha blending, floating point coordinates, support for more graphics formats and new techniques for manipulating groups of graphic elements. GDI coexists with the subsequent DirectX interfaces. See DirectX and device context.