The first computer generated facial animation from 1974

In 1974, Frederic Parke received a PhD in computer science from the University of Utah College of Engineering, where he also created the first computer generated physically-modeled human face. Parke’s original idea of virtual modeling has seen exponential advancements as technology that was once only accessible at a top university research facility underwent major development and democratization in the span of four decades.

Today, a combination of 3D scanning and Web GL allows us to view a hyper-realistic 3D modeled head in interactive real time. Side by side, the difference between them is striking. What once required a tremendous amount of computing power just to display can now be viewed in-browser.