September 8, 2016
Carl de Boor is extremely humble about his accomplishments over the course of his long career in mathematics. “My contribution is relatively small; I was at the right place at the right time. I saw what needed to be done. Any competent person would have done the same thing.”
All said by the winner of the National Medal in Science in Mathematics (among many other honors) for contributions that are part of algorithms that pretty much run our world. The graphics we see, the curve of lines in the text you are reading, all of that is a function of splines, B-splines in particular, that indicate curves. Computers couldn’t operate without them, and some of the early formulas that Carl developed have become so standard that they aren’t associated with him anymore.