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Newton Lee

Newton Lee

ACM Computers in Entertainment, USA

Title: From the World's First Computer Art to Star Trek's Holodeck


Newton Lee is CEO of Newton Lee Laboratories LLC, president of the Institute for Education, Research, and Scholarships, adjunct professor at Woodbury University’s School of Media, Culture & Design, and editor-in-chief of ACM Computers in Entertainment. Previously, he was a computer scientist at AT&T Bell Laboratories, senior producer and engineer at The Walt Disney Company, and research staff member at the Institute for Defense Analyses. He was founder of Disney Online Technology Forum, creator of Bell Labs’ first-ever commercial AI tool, and inventor of the world’s first annotated multimedia OPAC for the U.S. National Agricultural Library. Lee graduated Summa Cum Laude from Virginia Tech with a B.S. and M.S. degree in Computer Science, and he earned a perfect GPA from Vincennes University with an A.S. degree in Electrical Engineering and an honorary doctorate in Computer Science. He is the co-author of Disney Stories: Getting to Digital; author of the Total Information Awareness book series including Facebook Nation and Counterterrorism and Cybersecurity; coauthor/editor of the Digital Da Vinci book series including Computers in Music and Computers in the Arts and Sciences; and editor-in-chief of the Encyclopedia of Computer Graphics and Games.


Albert Einstein once said, “True art is characterized by an irresistible urge in the creative artist.” In accordance with the theme of the conference – “Where Art meets Science…. Imagine the Possibilities! ” – Newton Lee’s keynote speech takes us on an unforgettable journey from the world's first computer art to Cyborg artists to Star Trek's Holodeck. Along the way, he also discusses virtual reality with Oculus Rift, Microsoft HoloLens, and Magic Leap, among others.

In a 1996 interview by Terry Gross, Steve Jobs remarked that “computer science is a liberal art; it’s something everyone should know how to use, at least, and harness in their life. It’s not something that should be relegated to 5 percent of the population over in the corner. It’s something that everybody should be exposed to and everyone should have mastery of to some extent, and that’s how we viewed computation and these computation devices.”

Regina Dugan, senior executive at Google and former director of DARPA, summed it up nicely: “Science is art. It is the process of creating something that never exists before. ... It makes us ask new questions about ourselves, others; about ethics, the future.”

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