Karl Rinner was a bridge builder between theory and practice, highly respected by the local population, colleagues and in politics. Because of his comprehensive achievements in photogrammetry, engineering and higher geodesy, he was called “universal geodesist” in professional circles.
After studying mathematics and descriptive geometry at the University of Graz and surveying at the Technical University of Graz, he initially went to Munich. For the German Navy he built up the department “Photogrammetry and Surveying” from 1938. In the post-war period he was an independent civil engineer. Within a very short time his office for surveying became one of the leading ones in Austria. In 1959, Rinner started as a full professor at the Graz University of Technology with research in photogrammetry, earth tide measurement, EDM distance measurement and satellite geodesy.
Rinner himself was involved in international research and received many awards. Every year the Austrian Geodetic Commission awards the Karl Rinner Prize.