CG started with (static) data generated in batch-mode, displayed on:
line-printers --> plotters --> CRT's --> Raster Devices.
Now the data may be parameterized or dynamically generated from a simulation.
It is displayed interactively, and the user (viewer) is in real-time control.
CG started with black-&-white bit maps or dark-&-light green line drawings.
Now it aims for photo-realistic images with millions of color, glossy
highlights and subtle shadows.
Furthermore: animated sequences with kinematic or dynamic models.
CG started with simple rendering (image syntheis) of a given geometry.
Now CG merges with Computer Vision, shape recognition,
constructing displays form combination of images or from fields of light rays,
taking into account the physiological strength and weaknesses of our visual system.
CG used to run on specialized hardware in the basement of a research institution.
Now, CG is everywhere -- on every laptop and handheld computer.