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Jim Blinn

Computer Graphics Pioneer

Jim Blinn is best known for his computer animations done at JPL for the NASA Voyager fly-bys of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, for Carl Sagan’s Cosmos TV series, for the college level physics telecourse The Mechanical Universe, and for the High School level Project Mathematics. Most of these are now available on YouTube (see for links). He has published three books on the mathematics of Computer Graphics and is working on a fourth on Real Projective Algebraic Geometry. He hopes someday to really understand cubic curves. His awards include the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, the Siggraph Computer Graphics Achievement Award and Steven A. Coons award, the Ub Iwerks award, a MacArthur Fellowship and election to the National Academy of Engineering. But his favorite award is when someone comes up to him and says “I got into STEM because of your educational videos.”