What is Cairo (as in ofCairoRenderer)?

I read that basic questions are welcome, and questions about what isn’t clear to new users, so here’s one.

What is Cairo? I am studying what is under OpenFrameworks/documentation/graphics, and I see there is a section on something (a class, apparently) called ofCairoRenderer, but like much of the documentation there, it is extremely sparse on explaining what many things are or what one might do with them, or how exactly. In this case, I see:

This class extends others, you can call their methods on an instance of ofCairoRenderer too:

Which implies to me that it’s either a new system that is somehow different from ofGraphics, or something. It mentions ofBaseRenderer, but that class is not mentioned in the documentation/graphics subsection. Is there anyplace I might go to find out what Cairo is, other than trying to deduce it by reading the also-sparse documentation on the methods and comparing and contrasting them to the methods of the other classes?

Is there more verbose documentation somewhere else?


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cairo is used to create pdf files from what you have on screen. check out the example in

As for learning it is much better if you go to the learning section than reading the documentation, which becomes helpful once you understand how to use OF.


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I never would have guessed it was for PDFs! Thanks!