Exhibits At the Museum

This Day in History

Today: January 27, 2015
Ivan Sutherland using Sketchpad on the MIT TX-2 computer system.

May 16, 1938

Birthday of Ivan Sutherland, Inventor and Developer of Interactive Computer Graphics

Ivan Sutherland was the inventor and developer of MIT’s Sketchpad, which launched the interactive computer graphics field. Sketchpad’s many innovations included a display file for screen refresh, a recursively traversed hierarchical structure for modeling graphical objects, recursive methods for geometric transformations, and an object-oriented programming style. In 1968 he co-founded Evans and Sutherland Computer Corporation and was vice president and chief scientist. He also served as chairman of the computer science department at Caltech from 1976 to 1980. In 1980, he left Caltech to establish consulting firm Sutherland, Sproull and Associates. He also founded Advanced Technology Ventures, a venture capital firm.