Ivan Sutherland

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For other people named Ivan Sutherland, see Ivan Sutherland (disambiguation).
Ivan Edward Sutherland
Ivan Sutherland at CHM.jpg
Born (1938-05-16) May 16, 1938 (age 76)
Hastings, Nebraska, United States
Fields Computer science
Internet
Institutions Harvard University
University of Utah
Evans and Sutherland
California Institute of Technology
Carnegie Mellon University
Sun Microsystems
Portland State University
Alma mater MIT
Caltech
Carnegie Mellon
Thesis Sketchpad, a Man–Machine Graphical Communication System (1963)
Doctoral advisor Claude Shannon
Doctoral students Danny Cohen, Henri Gouraud, James H. Clark, Bui Tuong Phong, Franklin C. Crow, John Warnock, Robert P. Burton, Michael K. Ullner, Christopher R. Carroll
Known for Sketchpad, considered by many to be the creator of Computer Graphics
Notable awards Turing Award (1988)
Computer Pioneer Award (1985)
IEEE John von Neumann Medal (1998)
Association for Computing Machinery Fellow,
National Academy of Engineering member,
National Academy of Sciences member,
Kyoto Prize

Ivan Edward Sutherland (born May 16, 1938)[1] is an American computer scientist and Internet pioneer. He received the Turing Award from the Association for Computing Machinery in 1988 for the invention of Sketchpad, an early predecessor to the sort of graphical user interface that has become ubiquitous in personal computers. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, as well as the National Academy of Sciences among many other major awards. In 2012 he was awarded the Kyoto Prize in Advanced Technology for "pioneering achievements in the development of computer graphics and interactive interfaces".[2]

Biography[edit]

Sutherland earned his Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University), his Master's degree from Caltech, and his Ph.D. from MIT in EECS in 1963.

He invented Sketchpad in 1962 while at MIT. Professor Claude Shannon signed on to supervise Sutherland’s computer drawing thesis. Among others on his thesis committee were Marvin Minsky and Steven Coons. Sketchpad was an innovative program that influenced alternative forms of interaction with computers. Sketchpad could accept constraints and specified relationships among segments and arcs, including the diameter of arcs. It could draw both horizontal and vertical lines and combine them into figures and shapes. Figures could be copied, moved, rotated, or resized, retaining their basic properties. Sketchpad also had the first window-drawing program and clipping algorithm, which allowed zooming. Sketchpad ran on the Lincoln TX-2 computer and influenced Douglas Engelbart's oN-Line System. Sketchpad, in turn, was influenced by the conceptual Memex as envisioned by Vannevar Bush in his influential paper "As We May Think".

Sutherland replaced J. C. R. Licklider as the head of the US Defense Department Advanced Research Project Agency's Information Processing Techniques Office (IPTO), when Licklider returned to MIT in 1964.[3][4]

From 1965 to 1968, Sutherland was an Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering at Harvard University. Work with student Danny Cohen in 1967 led to the development of the Cohen–Sutherland computer graphics line clipping algorithm. In 1968, with the help of his student Bob Sproull, he created the first virtual reality and augmented reality head-mounted display system, named The Sword of Damocles.

From 1968 to 1974, Sutherland was a professor at the University of Utah. Among his students there were Alan Kay, inventor of the Smalltalk language, Henri Gouraud who devised the Gouraud shading technique, Frank Crow, who went on to develop antialiasing methods, and Edwin Catmull, computer graphics scientist, co-founder of Pixar and now President of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios.

In 1968 he co-founded Evans and Sutherland with his friend and colleague David C. Evans. The company has done pioneering work in the field of real-time hardware, accelerated 3D computer graphics, and printer languages. Former employees of Evans and Sutherland included the future founders of Adobe (John Warnock) and Silicon Graphics (Jim Clark).

From 1974 to 1978 he was the Fletcher Jones Professor of Computer Science at California Institute of Technology, where he was the founding head of that school's Computer Science department. He then founded a consulting firm, Sutherland, Sproull and Associates, which was purchased by Sun Microsystems to form the seed of its research division, Sun Labs.

Sutherland was a Fellow and Vice President at Sun Microsystems. Sutherland was a visiting scholar in the Computer Science Division at University of California, Berkeley (Fall 2005–Spring 2008). On May 28, 2006, Ivan Sutherland married Marly Roncken. Sutherland and Marly Roncken are leading the research in Asynchronous Systems at Portland State University.[5]

He has two children, Juliet and Dean, and four grandchildren, Belle, Robert, William and Rose. Ivan's elder brother, Bert Sutherland, is also a prominent computer science researcher.

Awards[edit]

Quotes[edit]

  • "A display connected to a digital computer gives us a chance to gain familiarity with concepts not realizable in the physical world. It is a looking glass into a mathematical wonderland."[18]
  • "The ultimate display would, of course, be a room within which the computer can control the existence of matter. A chair displayed in such a room would be good enough to sit in. Handcuffs displayed in such a room would be confining, and a bullet displayed in such a room would be fatal."[18]
  • When asked, "How could you possibly have done the first interactive graphics program, the first non-procedural programming language, the first object oriented software system, all in one year?" Ivan replied: "Well, I didn't know it was hard."[19]
  • "It’s not an idea until you write it down."[citation needed]
  • "Without the fun, none of us would go on!"[20]

Patents[edit]

Sutherland has more than 60 patents, including:

References[edit]

  1. ^ Elizabeth H. Oakes (2007). Encyclopedia of World Scientists. Infobase Publishing. p. 701. ISBN 978-1-4381-1882-6. Retrieved 16 August 2012. 
  2. ^ "The 2012 Kyoto Prize Laureates". Inamori Foundation. Retrieved 1 January 2013. 
  3. ^ Moschovitis Group, Hilary W. Poole, Laura Lambert, Chris Woodford, and Christos J. P. Moschovitis (2005). The Internet: A Historical Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 1-85109-659-0. 
  4. ^ Page, Dan and Cynthia Lee (1999). "Looking Back at Start of a Revolution". UCLA Today (The Regents of the University of California (UC Regents)). Archived from the original on 2007-12-24. Retrieved 2007-11-03. 
  5. ^ "About ARC". Asynchronous Research Center web site. Portland State University. Retrieved April 1, 2011. 
  6. ^ Computer History Museum Fellow
  7. ^ R&D 100
  8. ^ von Neumann Medal
  9. ^ ACM Fellow
  10. ^ EFF Pioneer
  11. ^ "Software System Award". ACM Awards. Association for Computing Machinery. Retrieved October 25, 2011. 
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^ Computerworld Leadership Award
  14. ^ Piore Award
  15. ^ NAS Member
  16. ^ NAE member
  17. ^ "Kyoto Prize". Retrieved 2012-06-22. 
  18. ^ a b Sutherland, Ivan E. (1965). "The Ultimate Display". Proceedings of IFIP Congress. pp. 506–508. Retrieved 22 September 2011. 
  19. ^ Alan Kay (Speaker) (1987). Doing with Images Makes Symbols (Videotape). University Video Communications, Apple Computer. Retrieved 22 September 2011. 
  20. ^ Sutherland, Ivan (April 1996), Technology and Courage, CiteSeerX: 10.1.1.137.8273 

Publications and external links[edit]