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The Programmer's Hierarchical Interactive Graphics System (PHIGS) is a draft standard for computer graphics programming. PHIGS is useful for applications that manipulate complex displays of 2D or 3D data in a highly interactive environment. This is done through the hierarchical data organization and flexible editing capabilities provided in PHIGS. This article describes the goals and underlying model of PHIGS, reviews its capabilities, and provides some brief application examples. The similarities and differences of PHIGS and GKS are discussed.