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  Reports from SIGGRAPH 2001

Keynote Address &
Annual Awards Recipients

Erin Callihan
24 July 2002

At Wednesday morning's Keynote Address, SIGGRAPH attendees had the opportunity to both congratulate awards winners and ponder the future of internet identity.

The morning began with an enthusiastic welcome by this year's SIGGRAPH Chair, Tom Appolloni of the Harris Corporation. He then proudly introduced the three Award winners: Bertram Herzog, Steven Gortler and David B. Kirk. Herzog received the well-deserved Outstanding Service Award, presented to an individual who has given extraordinary service to ACM SIGGRAPH.

Herzog, who has spent his life inspiring his colleagues and students to pursue careers in the computer graphics field and to become active SIGGRAPH members, gave a compelling and intimate thank you speech, and left the podium to a standing ovation.

Harvard University's Gortler, received the Significant New Researcher Award, which was given to recognize his work with "challenging mathematical insights coupled to practical graphical algorithms." The Award is presented annually to a researcher who is new to the field and has made a recent significant impact in computer graphics. Gortler jokingly reasoned that he got into computer graphics because his carpool driver back in college was a computer science major, and if he wanted to not hitchhike back to Long Island everyday, he had to take the same classes.

NVIDIA's Kirk was recognized with the distinguished Computer Graphics Achievement Award for his "technical role in bringing high performance computer graphics systems to the mass market." Kirk, who's family was in attendance, graciously thanked his peers, friends and loved ones.

Following the Awards portion, the audience had the opportunity to hear this year's Keynote Speaker, Esther Dyson, chairman of EDventure Holdings, speak on the future of internet identity.

Dyson, who was integral in developing ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) gracefully explained her position on privacy standards. A majority of her speech revolved around rebuilding ICANN ("a non-profit corporation formed to assume responsibility for the IP address space allocation, protocol parameter assignment, domain name system management and root server system management functions previously performed under U.S. government contract by IANA and other entities").

"I am personally trying to fix ICANN, rather than abandon it - we need a lightweight small policy organization," said a resolute Dyson.

Dyson pleaded to the audience that ICANN is a necessary entity to keep the monopoly away from governments or large corporations, fearing that too much power will mean less privacy for internet users. She also stressed that ICANN was a means of overseeing the internet, not controlling it.

Dyson urged SIGGRAPH listeners to take an active interest in how identity systems work. Paralleling now prominent air marshalls to ICANN, Dyson spoke of how air marshalls now fly with us to ensure our safety, effectively introducing the issue of our getting to know who is protecting us.

"Rather than fighting against the 'air marshalls (i.e. ICANN)' we should take the time to get to know them and find out how and why they are protecting us," stated Dyson. "The next time you sit down next to an air marshall, maybe it's time to know what he's up to."


Official SIGGRAPH 2002 Keynote Address/Awards Description


The annual conference is a chance to see friends you might only see at SIGGRAPH.


SIGGRAPH is the name of the show. ACM SIGGRAPH is the name of the organization.

Photos from SIGGRAPH 2002


This page is maintained by
Jan Hardenbergh
All photos you see in the 2002 reports are due to a generous loan of Cybershot digital cameras from SONY