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There are countless numbers of file types associated with computers these days. People have so many options that they often come across file types that they are unfamiliar with, and the GIF format is often one of these file formats.

The FIG format mainly works with graphics and it is used to do all sorts of things related to color, line thickness, arcs, etc. Basically, it’s a special vector drawing format that certain programs, most often XFig, use to make simple figures for documents.

The FIG software was invented by a person named Supoj Sutanthavibul. In 1985, he was working at the University of Texas, at its Austin campus. It originally ran under the SunView windowing system. Eventually, Supoj developed programs to concert .fig files to other formats. In 1992, Brian Smith took over with the help of several others. Eventually, the .fig format was capable of outputting files with real color in them.

This technology has been know to be used in the design of asset labels and asset tagging labels.

So far, XFig has had three different versions released, and each made unique changes to the format, expanding on its capabilities. Most conversion programs can convert the .fig format to other types like BMP and JPG. Currently, .fig files are in use via XFig and Brian Smith is now working with the format at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California. He has even been able to introduce a higher resolution .fig file format to the world. Supoj has since returned to Thailand.

FIG files are very rare these days for a variety of reasons. By now, many formats that are easier to use and easier to convert have been developed. However, some people still do use this file extension.