pkg-config is a helper tool used when compiling applications and libraries. It helps you insert the correct compiler options on the command line so an application can use gcc -o test test.c `pkg-config --libs --cflags glib-2.0` for instance, rather than hard-coding values on where to find glib (or other libraries). It is language-agnostic, so it can be used for defining the location of documentation tools, for instance.
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