“Turing Award and Beyond: In Conversation With Ed Cartmull and Pat Hanrahan” by Catmull and Hanrahan

  • ©Edwin (Ed) Catmull and Patrick (Pat) Hanrahan




    Turing Award and Beyond: In Conversation With Ed Cartmull and Pat Hanrahan



    Computer graphics has been deeply integrated in the advancement of computer science, technological development, and cultural change. In the last 50 years, we have seen many people take on the challenges of enabling imagery for use in the fields of design, engineering, entertainment, games, and scientific visualization. The cross-fertilization between those fields, computer science, and changing technology has been a great adventure. Ed Catmull and Pat Hanrahan were honored with the 2019 Turing Award for their role in advancing this field. In this fireside chat, Catmull and Hanrahan will share their perspectives on the events that advanced computer graphics and lessons for the future.

    Dr. Ed Catmull is a co-founder of Pixar Animation Studios and served as president of Pixar for 33 years, while also serving as president of Walt Disney Animation Studios for 13 of those 33 years. Catmull’s New York Times best-selling book “Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration” published in 2014. Catmull is an ACM Turing Award Laureate, and he has been honored with five Academy Awards, including two Oscars and a Lifetime Achievement Award. Catmull founded three of the leading centers of computer graphics research — including the computer division of Lucasfilm Ltd. and Pixar Animation Studios. Catmull has been a dedicated ACM SIGGRAPH participant for nearly 40 years. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Visual Effects Society. Catmull earned B.S. degrees in physics and computer science and a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Utah. In addition, he has received honorary doctorates from the University of Utah and Johns Hopkins University. In 2019, he retired as president of Pixar and Disney Animation and is active in writing and speaking.

    Pat Hanrahan is the Canon Professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering in the Computer Graphics Laboratory at Stanford University. His research focuses on rendering algorithms, graphics processing units, and visualization. Hanrahan received a Ph.D. in biophysics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1985. In 1989, he joined the faculty of Princeton University. In 1995, he moved to Stanford University. As a founding employee at Pixar Animation Studios in the 1980s, Hanrahan was part of the design of the RenderMan Interface Specification and the RenderMan Shading Language. More recently, Hanrahan served as a co-founder and CTO of Tableau Software. He has received three Academy Awards for Science and Technology, the SIGGRAPH Computer Graphics Achievement Award, the SIGGRAPH Stephen A. Coons Award, and the IEEE Visualization Career Award. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2019, he received the ACM A. M. Turing Award.