Bill Atkinson (born 1951) is an American computer engineer and photographer. Atkinson worked at Apple Computer from 1978 to 1990. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of California, San Diego, where Apple Macintosh developer Jef Raskin was one of his professors. Atkinson continued his studies as a graduate student at the University of Washington.
Atkinson was part of the Apple Macintosh development team and was the creator of the ground-breaking MacPaint application, among others. He also designed and implemented QuickDraw, the fundamental toolbox that the Macintosh used for graphics. QuickDraw's performance was essential for the success of the Macintosh's graphical user interface. Atkinson also designed and implemented HyperCard, the first popular hypermedia system.
Around 1990, General Magic's founding, with Bill Atkinson as one of the three co-founders, met the following press:
The obstacles to General Magic's success may appear daunting, but General Magic is not your typical start-up company. Its partners include some of the biggest players in the worlds of computing, communications, and consumer electronics, and it's loaded with top-notch engineers who have been given a clean slate to reinvent traditional approaches to ubiquitous worldwide communications. (-Byte Magazine)
In 2007 Atkinson began working as an outside developer with Numenta, a startup working on computer intelligence. On his work there Atkinson said, "what Numenta is doing is more fundamentally important to society than the personal computer and the rise of the Internet."
Some of Atkinson's noteworthy contributions to the field of computing include:
Atkinson now works as a nature photographer.
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