Lead Visualization Programmer

National Center for Supercomputing Applications

University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, IL


Computer Science

Parkland College, Champaign, IL  




M.F.A., Graphic Design
School of Art and Design, University of Illinois
M.A., Art Education
School of Art & Design, University of Illinois
B.S., Electrical Engineering
Southern Illinois University, Carbondale



Lead Visualization Programmer

NCSA - National Center for Supercomputing Applications

University of Illinois, Champaign, IL


2017 - present


Computer Science

Parkland College, Champaign, IL


2000 - present

Senior Visualization Programmer

NCSA - National Center for Supercomputing Applications

University of Illinois, Champaign, IL


2015 - 2017

Visualization Programmer

NCSA - National Center for Supercomputing Applications

University of Illinois, Champaign, IL


1997 - 2015

Computer Graphics Manager/R&D Software Development

TerraGlyph Interactive Studios, Big Idea Productions, Chicago, IL


1995 - 1997


Senior Graphics Researcher

Andersen Consulting, Technology Research Center, Chicago, IL


1993 - 1995

Scientific Graphics Software Developer, Animator

North Carolina Supercomputing Center, RTP, North Carolina


1990 - 1993

Graphics Research Programmer

NCSA, Aviation Research Lab, University of Illinois


1989 - 1990

Electrical & Avionics Engineer

McDonnell Aircraft Company, St. Louis, Missouri

Coles-Moultrie Electric Cooperative, Mattoon, Illinois


1987 - 1989



Visualization Rendering

Research, design and development of custom advanced rendering software for visualizing high-dimensional scientific data. Techniques include physically-based, distributed ray-tracing, GPU (GLSL) hardware shading, integration of volumetric, geometric, quadric, lines, and points in a single scene, abuffer particle system integration, bi-directional reflectance functions (BRDF), volume scattering with real-world absorption, scattering, and emission properties and volumetric phase functions, deep-map shadows, non-photorealistic rendering, motion blur, depth-of-field, key-frame animation editor, color-map editor, ambient occlusion, and support for 360 degree spherical projection VR display. Software system has been used to visualize data from a variety of computational simulations including density currents, turbulent boundary layers, hurricane development, binary neutron stars, 3D Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities, tornado-producing thunderstorms, wind-farm simulations, and AMR (adaptive mesh refinement) galaxy clusters. This work has been featured in the book Visual Computing, publications including Computer Graphics World, Physics World, and Astronomy Magazine, and presentations at SIGGRAPH, XSEDE, PEARC and Supercomputing conferences. Click thumbnails for imagery.


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Visualization Representation

Research and development of representation methods and algorithms to visualize high-dimensional scientific data. Particle is a particle systems generator and renderer to provide a more accurate and realistic representation of high-density vector data. This software was developed to simulate the results achieved from real-world smoke chamber tests as a way of analyzing complex, high-density vector data. The system has been successfully used to visualize astrophysical gas dynamic data and wind data circulating around structures and in film Data-Driven shown at SIGGRAPH 1993 Electronic Theater. Vsurf generates iso-surfaces from volume data. The algorithm used to determine polygonal surfaces is an implementation based on the method described by Wyvill, Wyvill, and McPheeters in Visual Computer - August 1986. The software eliminates the common holes problem within surfaces generated from the popular Marching Cubes algorithm. Program was used for various visualization productions and images and in film Caustic Sky shown at SIGGRAPH 1992 Electronic Theater. Click thumbnails for imagery.

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Collaborative, Remote Visualization

Researched and developed a C++ API to provide scientific visualization functionality in a collaborative, heterogeneous computing environment. Applications written with this API were capable of operating across a spectrum of platforms including virtual reality environments (i.e. CAVE, IDesk, IWall), graphics workstations, personal computers, or within a web browser. Software provided applications with the ability to share information among participants through standard message passing. Use of this API allowed application developers to write, without requiring prior knowledge, programs that render and display across different software and hardware architectures. Software also provided the capability for participants to remotely view a rendered scene in a standard web browser. Click thumbnail for imagery.

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Virtual Workplace

Designed and co-developed a distributed, shared, 3D virtual workplace environment that served to prototype next generation workspaces. This research was demonstrated at the Andersen Consulting Global Consulting Seminar. This system provided shared agent representations of users within a graphical world of interactive, 3D information spaces enabling users to share, point, and view one another. Click thumbnail for imagery.

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Information Visualization

Initiated and developed research initiative within Andersen Consulting's Center for Strategic Technology Research to visualize abstract information spaces. Involved tool development and collaborative client projects to represent business information in intuitive, multi-sensory forms. Produced and animated film showing the economic growth of industries within Andersen Consulting over a five year period. Film showcased at annual Partner conference. Click thumbnails for imagery.

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Toon Extraction

Research and development of software tools to extract and re-use information from 2D hand-drawn cel sequences for 3D applications and game creation. Motion Mapper maps 2D cel-animated, character motion to 3D joints and skeletons used in standard 3D animation packages. Software also employs FFT transformation on the input data by filtering in the frequency domain to reduce and remove input noise as well as alter the motion. Contour Extractor extracts outlines of painted regions from 2D digitized cel images. Software employs visualization principles of iso-contouring to identify and contour painted regions based on color information and writes out outlines as geometry for interactive viewing or use with standard animation packages. Shadow generator automatically generates shadows (body and cast shadows) from 2D cel-animated character sequences. Software uses input such as light direction, coverage, shadow colors and opacity and outputs shadow files to composite for final game animation sequences. Click thumbnails for imagery.

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Music Information Design

Researching and implementing techniques, methodologies, and tools for developing novel forms of designing information in the areas of music, music education, and the jazz genre. Techniques include metaphorical music mapping (using visual metaphors and human body movement to map and convey melody, harmony, rhythm), mapping musical concepts (such as note frequency and target notes) outside scope of standard notation, representing relationships between sound and music, intensity mapping and harmonic palettes, complementing visual design with ASL (American Sign Language), bar-coded representations (shape/proportion mapping for visualization of song structure and instrumental relationships). Software development includes midi processor, 3D animation system plug-ins, and music visualization system. Click thumbnails for imagery.

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Space-Time Synthesis

Exploring spatial and temporal simultaneity and employing time as a design element for developing new forms of informational and abstract designs. Investigating methods such as simultaneous display of time-based events, missing and replacing time sequences, interlacing spatial fragments, and juxtaposition of time-based events spatially in three-dimensions to represent information through multiple perspectives. Exploring novel methods of non-linear sequencing and frame-rate modification to allow for emotion, narrative, and expression. Software system allows designers to move a plane through three-dimensional space of time-based sequences at different speeds to create new sequences. Time-based imagery can be synchronized to a music track through expressive movement to create new sequences with music. Click thumbnails for imagery.

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Wired magazine

Into the Vortex: Megacomputers and the quest to understand superstorms, Nov. 2017


Physics World magazine

Predicting the Whirlwind, Volume 30 No 7, Jul. 2017


PBS News Hour

Supercomputers dive into the hearts of nature's worst tornados, Apr. 2017



Researchers Recreate 'El Reno' Tornado on Blue Waters Supercomputer, Mar. 2017



Peer into monster tornado with this incredible simulation, Mar. 2017


Popular Science

Supercomputer simulation of a devastating tornado, Mar. 2017


FOX News, St. Louis

Stunning new tornado simulation unlock secrets, Feb. 2017


Coalition for Academic Scientific Computation (CASC) brochure

Pumping Iron into the Universe, 2017

Manmade Twisters, 2016

Simulated Wind Farms, 2016


Cosmic Journeys

SuperTornado: Anatomy of a MegaDisaster, Dec. 2015


Science News

Virtual twister reveals possible source of tornado longevity, Sep. 2015


Slate magazine

Breathtaking Simulation of a Tornado-Producing Thunderstorm Looks Amazingly Real, Aug. 2015


The Weather Network

Supercomputer storm blurs the lines between sim and reality, Aug. 2015


Science Node

Photorealistic thunderstorm visualization wins XSEDE15 people's choice award, Aug. 2015


Wind Energy journal

Effects of turbine spacing on the power output of extended wind-farms, Mar. 2015


American Institute of Physics

Wind Energy: On the grid, Off the Checkerboard, Mar. 2015


International Science Grid This Week

Large eddy simulation shows limits of downstream wind turbines, Aug. 2014

Extreme scale video image retrieval and research, Sept. 2013


NCSA Access magazine

Duo Image, Fall 2012


NCSA Access magazine

Oscillons, Lumps in the Primordial Soup, Fall 2009


University of Illinois, Engineering in the News

Swirling Strengths, 2008


Fluid Motion conference

Vortex Visualization in Gravity Currents, 2007


NCSA Access magazine

Swirling strengths, cover, article, back, Summer 2007


PBS Nova

Monster of the Milky Way, Oct. 2006


Density currents

NCSA Access magazine, Summer 2006


Swirling Vortices

National Science Foundation News, 2007


The End of Cinematics

Mikel Rouse, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 2005


Visualization Handbook

Academic Press, Hansen/Johnson, ISBN 978-0123875822, 2004


Computer Graphics with OpenGL

Prentice Hall, Hearns/Baker, ISBN 978-0130153906, 2004


Developing Virtual Reality Applications: Foundations of Effective Design

Morgan Kaufmann, Craig/Sherman/Will, ISBN 978-0123749437, 2002


Visual Computing
Scientific American Library book, Friedhoff/Peercy, ISBN 978-0716750598, 2000


SIGGRAPH/EUROGRAPHICS Graphics Hardware Workshop

Real-time Shading Languages, Pat Hanrahan, Stanford University, 1999


Computer Graphics World
May 1999 issue


Physics Today
September 1999 issue


Astronomy Magazine
August 1999 issue


Discovery Channel
Science Live television show, 1999


Scientific Computing World

August/September 1999




Supercomputing 20 conference

Scientific Visualization & Data Analytics Showcase Technical Program, Nov. 2020

The Diurnal Beating of the Amazonian Hydroclimate


PEARC 20 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2020

Beating of the Amazon


PEARC 19 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2019

Flight Paths: Mapping Our Changing Neighborhoods


PEARC 19 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2019

Visualization of Hurricane Michael


PEARC 18 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2018

Visual Representation of the Joplin Tornadic Storm


Supercomputing 17 conference

Scientific Visualization & Data Analytics Showcase Technical Program, Nov. 2017

Simulation and Visual Representation of Tropical Cyclone-Ocean Interactions


PEARC 17 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2017

Visualization of Tropical Cyclone-Ocean Interactions


XSEDE ECSS Symposium

Visualization of Simulated White Dwarf Collisions as a Primary Channel for Type Ia Supernovae

David Bock, NCSA, Jun. 2017


XSEDE 16 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2016

Visualization of Simulated White Dwarf Collisions as a Primary Channel for Type Ia Supernovae


Supercomputing 15 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2015

Visualization of a Tornado-Producing Thunderstorm: A Study of Visual Representation


XSEDE 15 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2015

Visualization of a Tornado-Producing Thunderstorm


XSEDE 14 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2014

Visualization of Large Eddy Simulations of Extended Wind Farms


XSEDE 13 conference

Visualization Showcase, July 2013

Movie-cube: Spatial representation of time-based media

Visualization of vortical structures from DNS of spatially developing turbulent boundary layers


HASTAC 2013 conference

Large-Scale video analytics


XSEDE ECSS Symposium

DNS of Spatially Developing Turbulent Boundary Layers

David Bock and Darren Adams, NCSA, Sept. 2012


SIGGRAPH '00 conference

Invited panel presentation, July 2000

Visualizing the Cosmos: smoke or mirrors?


SIGGRAPH '99 conference, RenderMan Users group

Invited talk, Los Angeles, CA, July 1999

RenderMan for Scientific Visualization and Effects


TeraGrid New Users Workshop 2008

Advanced Application Support Visualization


School of Technology and Design

Invited talk, NYC College of Technology, City University of New York, May 2005

Teaching Visualization


Ad Club of Champaign-Urbana

April Greiman visit (distinguished LA-based graphic designer), Feb. 2004

Invited panelist


World of Science television program

Parkland community lecture series, 2004

Invited lecturer


Live and Learn television program

Parkland college series

Invited speaker, 2003


CIC Research Computing Workshop

Invited talk, Penn State University

Visualization Rendering


MAPINT conference, 1998

Invited talk, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, OH

Collaborative Scientific Visualization


Center for Research in Scientific Computing

Invited talk, North Carolina State University, 1993

Scientific Visualization Productions 


SIGGRAPH Electronic Theater, 1993

Data Driven


SIGGRAPH Electronic Theater, 1992

Caustic Sky




David Bock, Francina Dominguez, and Jorge Eiras-Barca. 2020.

“Beating of the Amazon: Visualizing the Diurnal Cycle of the Amazonian Hydroclimatology.”

In Practice and Experience in Advanced Research Computing (PEARC ’20),

July 26–30, 2020, Portland, OR, USA. ACM, New York, NY, USA, 2 pages.



David Bock and Brian Jewett. 2018.

“Visual Representation of the Joplin Tornadic Storm.”

In Proceedings of the Practice and Experience on Advanced Research Computing (PEARC ’18).

Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, Article 106, 1–3.



David Bock, Hui Lui, Ryan L. Sriver

“Simulation and Visual Representation of Tropical Cyclone-Ocean Interactions” to appear in proceedings for

Supercomputing 17, The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis

Nov. 2017


David Bock, 2017.
"Visualization of Tropical Cyclone-Ocean Interactions."
In Proceedings of PEARC17, New Orleans, LA, USA, July 09-13, 2017.


Sisneros R., Raji M., Van Moer M.W., Bock D. (2016)
"Chasing Rainbows: A Color-Theoretic Framework for Improving and Preserving Bad Colormaps."
In:Bebis G. et al. (eds) Advances in Visual Computing. ISVC 2016. Lecture Notes in Computer Science,
vol 10072. Springer, Cham



D. Bock, L. Orf, R. Sisneros,

"Visualization of a Tornado-Producing Thunderstorm: A Study of Visual Representation",

Supercomputing 15, Nov. 2015.


V. Kuhn, R. Arora, A. Craig, M. Simeone, D. Bock, K. Franklin, L. Marini,

"Large Scale Video Analytics: On-demand, iterative inquiry for moving image research",

8th IEEE International Conference on eScience, Oct. 2012.



McGrath, R.E., A. Craig, D. Bock, and R. Rocha. "Augmented Reality for an Ethnobotany Workbook"
Technical Note, Institute for Computing in the Humanities, Social Sciences and Arts (I-CHASS),
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, October 2011


Cantero, M. I., S. Balachandar, M. H. Garcia, and D. Bock (2008),
"Turbulent structures in planar gravity currents and their influences
on the flow dynamics", J. Geophys. Res., 113, C08010,



P. Baker, D. Bock, R. Heiland, M. Stephens, Visualization of Damaged Structures,

Department of Defense, CEWES MSRC PET Annual Technical Report: Year 2, Mar. 1998.


D. Bock, A. Craig, Collaborative Scientific Visualization, Department of Defense,

PET/MSRC Conference Proceedings, Apr. 1998.




Best Visualization, Supercomputing 20 conference

“The Diurnal Beating of the Amazonian Hydroclimate”

Nov. 2020


Best Visualization, PEARC19 conference

“Flight Paths: Mapping Our Changing Neighborhoods”

Jul. 2019


People's Choice Award for Best Visualization, XSEDE15 conference

"Visualization of a Tornado-Producing Thunderstorm"

Jul. 2015


People's Choice Award for Best Visualization, XSEDE14 conference

"Visualization of Large Eddy Simulations of Extended Wind Farms"

Jul. 2014


NCSA Special Recognition Award

PEARC17 Visualization

Jun, 2017


NCSA Special Recognition Award

XSEDE 16 Visualization

Aug, 2016


NCSA Special Recognition Award

Oculus Rift Demonstration

Jan, 2016


ICCTA Outstanding Faculty Award, Parkland College

Illinois Community College Trustees Association



Brodie Grant Award

College of Fine and Applied Arts, School of Art and Design

Fall 2000




Courses developed and taught

Introduction to Programming – Introduction to programming w/ Python

Computer Science I (w/ C++) – Object-oriented design, programming w/ C++

Computer Science II (w/ C++) – Object-oriented design, programming w/ C++

Computer Science I (w/ Java) – Object-oriented design, programming w/ Java

Computer Science II (w/ Java) – Advanced Java programming

Computer Graphics I – Real-time graphics programming w/ OpenGL

Computer Graphics II – Real-time shader programming w/ GLSL

Computer Graphics II – Scientific visualization and Virtual Reality using NCSA CAVE

3D Computer Animation I – Introduction to 3Dmodeling, animation, rendering

3D Computer Animation II – Animation and cinematography

3D Computer Animation III – Character development and animation

3D Computer Animation IV – Rendering and effects

Mobile Application Development – Programming apps for Android platform


Virtual Reality
Designed, developed, and taught a unique course in CAVE Virtual Reality programming using the CAVE at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Offered to computer science students at both the University of Illinois and Parkland College, this course required students to design and develop their own CAVE applications. At conclusion, these applications were then showcased to the public at the annual University of Illinois Engineering Open House. Many of these student applications continue to be demonstrated today for various tours and visits.


Digital Media

Designed and developed degree program and curriculum in motion graphics, 2D/3D computer animation, gaming, web development, and graphics programming. Program offers unique blend of art, design, film, and computer science courses with various specialized tracks. Graduating students have been employed at prestigious national and local companies and institutions such as Industrial Light & Magic (feature film/effects), Rhythm & Hues (feature film), 2K Sports (3D gaming), the University of Alabama (scientific visualization), Frasca (local 3D flight simulation) and Volition Inc. (local 3D gaming). Examples of student 3D animation work demo reel1 and demo reel2.




Software Development

C/C++, Java, Python


Git, Visual C++/MFC, Xt/Motif

TCP/IP Sockets, RPC, Perl


Mobile App Development

Android API, Eclipse, Android Studio


Computer Animation and Post-Production

Autodesk Maya, Pixar RenderMan, 3D Studio

Adobe AfterEffects, Adobe Photoshop


Autodesk Maya Instructor Certification

Learning Maya Introduction

Learning Maya Transition

Character Animation in Maya