Some on-line highlights of Mike's career
Mike Potel info

In 1997, Mike Potel and Cathy Frantz co-founded Wildcrest Associates, a Silicon Valley consultancy and software products company specializing in software technology and business consulting, intellectual property invetigations, and Internet and mobile components and applications.

Mike has been a member of the Editorial Board of IEEE Computer Graphics & Applications since 1989 and Associate Editor-in-Chief for Departments beginning in 2002.  Since 1994, Mike has been Editor of the regular bimonthly feature, the "Applications" department.  Here is a list of all the Applications department articles Mike has edited over that time.  Mike writes the occasional feature himself, such as the November 1996 article highlighting Cathy's work on computer graphics & DNA sequencing, a January 1998 article about motion sickness in computer graphics systems, a January 2000 invited article on the future of computer graphics applications as part of the special IEEE CG&A "Vision 2000" issue, the November 2004 tenth anniversary retrospective article "A Decade of Applications", a March 2012 "From the Editor" article entitled "CG&A's Departments", and the November 2014 twentieth anniversary article "Visualizing 20 Years of Applications" co-authored with Pak Chung Wong.

Mike was the Vice President of Technology and Chief Technology Officer at Taligent, Inc.  Taligent was founded in March 1992 as a joint venture between Apple and IBM and joined by Hewlett-Packard in January 1994.  Its goal was to develop a fully object-oriented operating system and portable application environment, which shipped in July 1995 as the CommonPoint Application System (see this brief history of Taligent). 

In January 1996, IBM took over sole ownership of Taligent and in January 1998 formally merged Taligent into IBM.  During this phase, Taligent changed its focus to the Java platform with products such as the VisualAge WebRunner Toolkit (see Mike's technical paper describing its Model View Presenter (MVP) programming model).  Taligent's international class libraries were licensed by Sun and have been part of Java since JDK 1.1 and subsequently licensed by others such as Netscape and Oracle.  Sun also licensed Taligent's 2D graphics class libraries which were added to Java in JDK 1.2 and Taligent's JavaBeans Migration Assistant for ActiveX development tool.

The complete Taligent developer documentation, including manuals, class and member descriptions, and documented sample programs are available on-line at CERN (also mirrored here).

The complete set of Taligent US patents (161 as of March 2005) are available on-line at the US Patent and Trademark Office (+ 208 EPO and PCT patents available on-line at Delphion).

In 1995, Mike co-authored the book Inside Taligent Technology, which provides a comprehensive description of the object-oriented technology underlying the CommonPoint application system built by Taligent. Over 160 US patents were awarded to members of the Taligent team for this work. 

The front sections and first two chapters were made available for web publication with the kind permission of Addison-Wesley. 

Click here to view Barnes & Noble's description and ordering information.  Click here to view Amazon.com's description and ordering information

Mike was at Apple Computer from 1985 to 1992.  Until 1987 was Engineering Manager in Apple's Advanced Technology Group and worked for Larry Tesler.  His group was responsible for key Macintosh graphics and sound technologies including Color QuickDraw, the first Macintosh Color Display Card, the Macintosh Sound Manager, and the Apple Sound Chip, as well as development tools such as MacApp and HyperCard.  He then became Senior Director of Software Engineering in Product Development where he was responsible for all Macintosh System Software and Development Tools. He initiated both Macintosh System 7.0 and the "Pink" project that gave rise to Taligent and shipped such Apple products as QuickTime, TrueType, HyperCard, A/UX, AppleScript, MacApp, and the Macintosh Programmer's Workshop (MPW).

At Apple, Mike wrote a 3D rendering toolkit and rendered a set of ray traced images on Apple's Cray computer which were featured on the cover of the original Mac II (first color Macintosh) manual and many advertisements from Apple and Mac 3rd parties. 

While at Apple, Mike developed the inverse color look-up table technique and the method for computing it efficiently for color dithering that were key parts of the 2 US Patents awarded to the team that developed Color QuickDraw for the Macintosh, used in all Macintosh computers since 1987.  The US Patent and Trademark Office on-line patent database summaries are:
      5,068,644 Color graphics system
      5,003,299 Method for building a color look-up table

Mike attended graduate school at the University of Chicago where he got his M.S. and Ph.D. in the Committee on Information Sciences (later renamed the Department of Computer Science).  He subsequently joined the faculty in the Department of Biophysics and Theoretical Biology where he founded the University of Chicago Computer Graphics and Image Processing Laboratory and rose to the rank of Research Associate, Associate Professor.

Working with colleague Bob Josephs at the University of Chicago, Mike, his two graduate students Bridget Carragher and Dave Bluemke, and Cathy Frantz who was at that time a post-doctoral fellow in the lab, built 3D models of sickle cell hemoglobin molecules such as the one shown here.  They then developed image processing and 3D reconstruction systems and used them to solve the molecular structure of sickle cell hemoglobin fibers that underlie sickle cell anemia, what had been a 10+ year open problem and matter of controversy in the field.

Mike used the image processing system he developed at the University of Chicago to create the images of propagating cAMP waves in aggregating cellular slime molds that appeared on the cover of Science as well as being featured in the ACM SIGGRAPH 1982 slide set.

Mike's 1977 Ph.D. thesis was about the design of an interactive real-time animation system for the analysis of motion recorded on film, called Galatea, co-developed with Bob Futrelle now Associate Professor of Computer and Information Science at Northeastern University.  It used a large screen projection graphics overlay system synchronized with 16 and 35mm stop-motion movie projectors.  It could work with multiple simultaneous views and reconstruct 3D moving coordinates, such as in the heart motion study shown here.  Papers on Galatea were presented 4 different years at the ACM SIGGRAPH Conference and in numerous other conference proceedings and journals.  Mike's thesis advisor was Robert L. Ashenhurst, who was Chairman of the Committee on Information Sciences and Editor-in-Chief of the Communications of the ACM.

Mike attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where he received his B.S. in Mathematics in 1970 and got into computing and his first programming positions.

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