Stanford Educational Studies Program (ESP)

Education For Students. By Students.

ESP Biography

GREGORY PRISAMENT, Software Engineer & Founder of Lychee Software

Major: Computer Science (Princeton Univ

College/Employer: NVIDIA

Year of Graduation: 2005

Picture of Gregory Prisament

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Greg Prisament graduated from Princeton University with a degree in Computer Science. After graduation he joined Insomniac Games where he worked on games in the Ratchet & Clank series and Resistance: Fall of Man. He later moved to the SF bay area to work for NVIDIA developing graphics drivers for their Tegra line of mobile processors.

Greg recently left NVIDIA to found Lychee Software, which is a computer graphics consulting firm & micro-ISV. Visit for more info about his latest venture.

Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

C696: Introduction to Ray Tracing in Splash! Spring 2010 (Apr. 17 - 18, 2010)
Ray Tracing is a technique for rendering realistic images with computers. The creators of films such as Shrek, Ratatouille, Up and Avatar utilized ray tracing (among other techniques) to create their splendid graphics. - Learn how this beautiful and elegant algorithm works. - See some examples of amazing computer-generated images made with ray tracers. - Get introduced to POV-Ray, a free text-based ray tracer that you can use to create ray traced images at home. - Walk through the source code to a minimal ray tracer program. This will be a highly technical class with lots of math and programming: however, it's neat math & programming. I will try my best to teach the mathematical concepts needed to understand ray tracing. But due to time constraints I'll move quickly. Knowledge of basic algebra, polynomials, trigonometry and geometry is highly recommended. Knowledge of vectors (dot and cross products) and previous programming experience will be helpful.

C449: What Computers Really Can't Do. in Splash! Fall 2009 (Oct. 10 - 11, 2009)
Give a computer the right program and enough memory and time and it can solve any problem... right? Incorrect. It turns out that computers are fundamentally limited in what they can do. Computers are provably useless at solving some simply-stated, practical problems. We'll take a look at what sorts of problems spell trouble for computers, gaining insight into a fascinating topic that is central to Computer Science. Hands-on activities will include simulating Turing Machines with M&Ms and playing with tiles.

C318: What Computers Really Can't Do. in Splash! Spring 2009 (Apr. 04 - 05, 2009)
I will give a whirlwind tour of Theoretical Computer Science focusing on the bad news: problems that can't be solved by any computer, past, present, or future. Along the way we'll learn about Turing Machines, Big-O notation, decidability, reductions, and understand the biggest open question in computer science: does P=NP? This class is based on the book "Computers LTD: What They Really Can't Do" by David Harel. This class is aimed towards 11th and 12th graders, but I'm leaving it open to bright & interested 9th/10th graders.