Mark Everingham, 1973–2012

This site is in tribute to Mark Everingham, a wonderful partner, son and colleague, whom we lost far too early. Mark gave so much to the computer vision community, selflessly and always to such a high standard. His contributions will continue to benefit researchers for generations to come.

Jelena Havelka, John Everingham, Andrew Zisserman

If you would like to make a donation to charity in Mark’s memory, then please give to


David Hogg, 2012/07/19 22:10
When Mark first came to Leeds, I knew we had made a special appointment and Mark more than lived up to this. He was a perfectionist in everything he did. His conference reviews were outstanding; his leadership in the community was tireless, and his contribution to research was far-reaching. His clarity of thought and depth of knowledge had a profound impact on those that he worked with.

Mark was an exceptional researcher, educator and colleague. His contribution to computer vision was wide-ranging in that he not only created new ideas but also strengthened the methodological bedrock of our discipline. He had much more to give, and will be greatly missed.
John Winn, 2012/07/19 22:11
I've known Mark since his Oxford days, getting to know him well through our joint work on the Pascal VOC challenge. Mark’s dedication and enthusiasm made him the driving force behind VOC - he more than anyone made the challenge the success it has been. He was passionate about vision research - always striving to achieve the highest quality results and pushing for new ideas. He was also kind and generous - quick to acknowledge and encourage the achievements of others. On one of our first meetings, he was hugely positive and supportive about one of my first vision papers, which meant a great deal to me as a newcomer to the field. I believe his dedication to the Pascal challenge was in part motivated by a desire to find people doing great work and give them a platform to talk about it. The community has lost not only a great researcher but also a great advocate for the research of others.

I was lucky to work closely with him over six years, but I wish I had known him better.
Mark, you will be greatly missed.
Bill Freeman, 2012/07/19 23:22
I knew Mark through an extended visit to Oxford while he was there, and after that through interactions at workshops and conferences. He was such a sweet person, often at the hub of things socially, but in his quiet way.

Professionally, you could say the situation was the same: he was at the hub, but in a quiet way. He was both really good and really
selfless. Through running the PASCAL competitions, Mark, more than any other individual, helped bring computer vision into its current era of rigorous experimental evaluation. Now universally acknowledged as the benchmark for object recognition performance, the PASCAL competitions changed the character of computer vision and helped it to become an experimental science. But Mark did all this in a quiet way, bringing the attention to those whose algorithms he evaluated, rather than to himself. He left a very big mark on the field in a very short time.

I'm so sorry that he's gone, and I extend my deep condolences to his family.
Luc Van Gool, 2012/07/19 23:24
I got to know Mark at first through a project we did together with Oxford. I was impressed. Such a sharp but simultaneously such a modest guy. Later, I got to know Mark better through the Pascal VOC challenge. There can be no doubt, Mark more than anybody else has contributed to this influential benchmark. Working hard, mostly in the background, without applause or honorary mentions, VOC was the kind of initiative Mark wanted to drive forward, in the interest of the community, always interested in gauging what is really successful in vision and accepting no nonsense. With Mark, the computer vision community has lost a great mind and a very, very kind colleague.

Mark, you will be missed, a lot.
Pietro Perona, 2012/07/19 23:24
A number of us collaborated with Mark for a couple of years on detecting and recognizing faces. We held weekly phone meetings. As it often happens in research, the going was tough and more often than not we would feel confused and frustrated by the week's work. Mark, never one to seek the limelight, would rarely speak up. Towards the end of the meeting someone would ask him whether he had had any luck. He would often be the only one who had made progress, through a clever experiment, careful observations, a new idea. In time I came to savor this final moment of clarity, when Mark would give us his report and we would finally see a way forward. I can still hear his deep, methodical and wise voice detailing matter-of-fact some authentic gems.

Later Mark selflessly led and coordinated the PASCAL challenge; this work catalyzed the effort of hundreds of people in visual recognition and changed the course of the field.

I feel fortunate to have had the chance of working with him and remember him fondly.
Majid Mirmehdi, 2012/07/19 23:25
You could not help noticing Mark if he was in the room, be it at a social occasion, or at a small seminar, or a large lecture theatre hall.

He always asked indepth questions, even when the topic was quite different to what were his areas of expertise. Mark was one of the top students and RAs who passed through the Bristol Vision Group, and following that, he continued to shine brightly year after year wherever he was. We will miss him very much and his passing is a great loss to the computer vision community.
Dima Damen, 2012/07/19 23:28
Mark moved to Leeds a few months after I started my PhD. Despite Mark’s known difficult-to-satisfy attitude, he was always ready to discuss ideas and answer questions. I recall how he spent one afternoon helping me solve a code problem, and another giving me advice on how to formulate a solution more clearly. Mark was always keen on clarity. In seminars, speakers knew they wouldn’t be allowed to finish their talk before Mark dissected their work, and exposed all implementation details.

I will always be grateful for him for giving me my first chance in reviewing a paper, and helping in organising a conference during BMVC08. Through his life, Mark taught us how to rigorously assess methods we read/hear about. After he departed, he made sure to leave behind a set of lessons we will always sadly remember. “Do not let the progress of your research affect your mood”, his words still ring clearly in my ears.
Jitendra Malik, 2012/07/19 23:28
Mark Everingham was a superb researcher who made noteworthy contributions to problems such as human pose estimation and sign language recognition, and it is a tragic loss to our community not to have him with us anymore. But perhaps what was his unique contribution to the field was his selfless work in collecting and annotating datasets for facilitating and evaluating research. The PASCAL VOC challenge which for the last five years has helped define the field of object recognition was led by him and will forever be a memorial to him. I always enjoyed talking with him - he had that British understatedness concealing a depth that so many could emulate. We will miss him indeed. Rest in peace, Mark, and our thoughts and best wishes are with your family and friends.
Josef Sivic, 2012/07/19 23:29
I know Mark since our times at Oxford. Mark was starting a post-doc as I was beginning my Phd. We have connected almost immediately, became friends and later colleagues and collaborators. Eventually, we have published together several papers. We spent a lot of time together discussing both research and life -- at our "breaks", late nights working in the lab, or over a pint of beer at the nearby Royal Oak or Dew Drop Inn.

Mark was an excellent and unique researcher, and a great colleague. He constantly searched for better understanding. He would often implement a paper, just presented at a seminar, to gain deeper understanding of it. In our discussions, I would always learn from him and understood something better, or got an idea how to progress. He was a rigorous researcher with very high standards and an amazing knowledge of literature. His long-lasting search for rigorous evaluation culminated in him running the Pascal evaluation, which has brought rigorous experimental evaluation to the vision community.

Mark has been also a very sweet person and a great friend. He would selflessly offer help and advice. I still remember Mark helping me at the very last moment to put together references for one of my first paper submissions. Mark had a subtle but great sense of humor. Sometimes, I would keep laughing at his joke for days. I have always very much enjoyed Mark's company, although in the last few years, we have not seen each other very often. This made our occasional meetings even more intensive. I was very fortunate to have met Mark.

I send my deepest condolences to Jelena and Mark's family.

Mark, you will be really, really missed.
Alyosha Efros, 2012/07/19 23:30
I count myself extremely lucky to have overlapped with Mark for a year in Oxford, and like many other Oxfordites, consider him as one of the biggest influences on my scientific thinking. Mark was a true Scientist. Not only because of his encyclopedic erudition and his deeply keen insights into the computer vision problem, but above all, because of his tireless and selfless pursuit of clarity and the scientific truth. And if our discipline today is even a little closer to being a real experimental science than a decade ago, it is, in no small part, due to Mark's efforts.

Among Mark's great many talents, the one I cherished the most was that of a unsurpassed scientific critic. Long after leaving Oxford, I would still seek out his opinion, above anyone else's, whenever I had a new paper I was excited about. Mark was always tough, honest, and right on the mark. He would ask about the corner cases that I didn't even consider, point out obscure but highly relevant previous work that I have never heard of, and always demand to know if there wasn't a simpler way of doing the same thing. On the other hand, if the paper passed the "Mark test" without getting demolished, then I knew it would sail into any conference or journal.

Above all, Mark was an absolutely wonderful person -- generous and warm (in that understated British way), and just as in his scientific pursuits, deeply honest. He was a great conversationalist, with wide-ranging interests spanning literature, music and art, as well as a great sense of humor. I still smile remembering his many great stories told over a beer at the the Dew Drop Inn.

Reading over what I wrote, I realize that Mark would have likely offer plenty of criticisms: "As usual, Alyosha, you use too many words, and you wave your hands too much", he would likely have said, "Just get to the point". Yes, Mark, you are absolutely right, as always.

The point is: you will be terribly, terribly missed! Rest in peace, Mark.
Mark Mon-Williams, 2012/07/20 09:27
In psychology we knew Mark primarily from our visits to the Faversham for drinks after work on Fridays.

But Mark also provided much needed assistance to us when we were trying to develop algorithms to determine how well human participants had traced a visually presented stimulus. The time we spent with Mark was both informative but highly amusing – Mark introduced us to a whole new anthropomorphic language regarding computer algorithms. Our lab group still like to talk about ‘greedy algorithms’ and ‘vanilla solutions’ and it’s immensely satisfying to know that the analysis we eventually developed is related to the ‘dog in the park problem’.

It is very fitting that the techniques Mark helped us develop are now being used by Jelena in collaborative work we are conducting on visual memory and reading abilities in children.

We will miss Mark and our thoughts are very much with Jelena and Mark’s family.
Sam Johnson, 2012/07/20 15:37
I have worked with Mark for nearly 5 years after approaching him to discuss project ideas at the end of my undergraduate degree. It was clear that he was truly passionate about his work and improving the field as a whole. As a supervisor I always say that he acted as normaliser - if you felt great about something before a meeting he would tell you what you had overlooked. If you felt down he would discuss community politics and the latest from his ever ongoing house renovations before motivating you to move on.

In the past couple of years Mark's approach became more hands-off and we became good friends. He would ridicule my desire to write sometimes overly complex code and we would laugh every time he tried to understand some code he'd written 2 years ago with no comments and two letter variable names. Mark always sought to improve everything he came into contact with, be that his undergraduate students, PhD students or the field as a whole. Usually he succeeded.

Mark was my supervisor, friend, and idol. I owe him greatly for the opportunities he has given me and am deeply saddened that I will never get a chance to tell him how much of an impact he has had on my life.

I will miss you Mark, and remember you always. Thank you for everything.
Ardhendu Behera, 2012/07/21 07:19
I met Mark first in 2007 when I joined the Computer Vision group in Leeds, as a postdoctoral fellow. I was a complete novice at object detection and tracking, at that time. He realized my shortcomings, instantly from my first presentation. After the presentation, he spent an unforgettable couple of hours with me, in front of a white-board laying out different techniques and methods. He has always been there, to help out in any problems faced by either colleagues or the students. He never compromised in terms of quality of research. His contribution to the vision group is irreplaceable. He would be greatly missed as a loyal member of the group, a colleague and a friend. I would like to extend my heartfelt condolences to his family. May his soul rest in peace.
Henk Muller, 2012/07/21 21:40
One Thursday evening after work Mark and myself ended up in the pub. As usual, work was discussed, and Mark had several interesting half-baked ideas on evaluating multi dimensional design spaces. We stayed in the pub til closing time, and continued out discussions in his flat. Come 3 in the morning, I decided that I really had to go as I would be expected back at work in 6 hours, and I left Mark to it. 

The following morning I saw him briefly. He then came into my office at 3 in the afternoon, having implemented all we had discussed, done the experiments and written 80% of a paper... He quite liked me to help with the remaining 20% since the deadline of BMVC2001 was a bit later that Friday evening!

The paper got finished, submitted, and accepted with good reviews. Mark presented the paper and came back stating that he had had good feedback, but that one person had suggested that they had heard of something like this by "Pieto" or so; they couldn't recall the precise name.

Two months later Mark came in with his wry smile that often spelled mischief: "It is called a Pareto front and was invented in 96 years ago...". We had a good laugh, decided that this had been a good wheel to reinvent, and Mark reworked the successor paper that went to ECCV2002 to include his newfound knowledge.

This is my lasting memory of Mark: good ideas, tenacity to see them through, relentless in understanding how they fit in with what others have done, and always time to discuss them over a drink. 

The world has lost a bright scientist and wonderful character.
Yann LeCun, 2012/07/22 05:41
A tragic loss.

Mark had a very British sense of humor. At one of the Sicily vision workshops a few years ago in Taormina, I was sitting near Mark at the banquet. He and I both ordered the tuna. But the tuna turned out to be not very fresh, and Mark said: "during this dinner, which may be my last, I thought the fish had a very cheesy smell to it". Fortunately, this wasn't his last dinner.
Patrick Ott, 2012/07/23 17:00
In German we often say ``Doktorvater'' instead of simply saying ``PhD supervisor''. Somehow the german term is a lot more descriptive than the english one because just as the relationship to the father, the relationship to the supervisor is not always an easy one. Instead it very often turns out to be very productive and its tremendous value only becomes clear over time. This is especially true if the name of your supervisor happens to be Mark Everingham.

I am very proud to say that Mark was my supervisor. His guidance has not only enabled me to successfully complete my PhD but it allowed me to become a better researcher. His honesty, pursuit of clarity and bright mind have helped me through the PhD and his passion for perfection, the tireless correction skills and his ability to cheer me up when I was feeling like abandoning it all were especially helpful in the last months of writing up.

I will miss him very much. I lost a supervisor, a colleague and a friend. In his too short life Mark has accomplished things that many people will not accomplish in an entire lifetime. His contributions to computer vision will never be forgotten and they will shape future research for the many more decades. He was a true genius and I will never forget him.

My deepest condolences to Jelena and his family.
Andrew Davison, 2012/07/25 12:18
Although we worked in somewhat different parts of computer vision, I always had the greatest respect for Mark since I got to know him during the time we overlapped in Oxford. I remember most the weekly reading group meetings where many of us were regularly in awe of his command of the widest range of topics and techniques, and his complete commitment to rigour and "doing things properly". But as others have noted he was always generous and inclusive with his knowledge and he played an important role in bringing many of us up to new levels as researchers.
Deva Ramanan, 2012/07/26 23:41
As many have already said, Mark was an extremely influential but surprisingly modest researcher. Unbeknownst to him, I first met him in 2003, when he asked a particularly incisive question to a speaker at a conference, in such a way that left a lasting impression on me. Indeed, Mark could cut to the heart of the matter like no other. I got to know him in the summer of 2004 when I spent the summer visiting Oxford. Mark was gracious enough to hang out with the strange interloper from the US, from daily lunches to pints at the local pubs. I remember being struck by Mark's breadth of knowledge. He taught me the "right" way to think about many things in vision, from unsupervised learning to Chamfer matching. Much of these insights I continue to pass on to my own students.

Perhaps my warmest memories of Mark involve his unmistakable dry sense of humor; he once politely informed me that I have a nasally American accent (and he was right!). But he always quick to support others, including me. He would offer genuine words of encouragement, both when work was going well and when it was not. His generosity was equalled only by his modesty. I remember being surprised, upon leaving Oxford that summer, that Mark was not more in the limelight. But perhaps this is how he preferred it, toiling in the background while others basked in the sun. A prime example of this is the rigorous empiricism he brought to our field, where again, he choose to highlight the contributions of others rather than his own work.

Mark, I will fondly remember one of the last times that I saw you, sipping wine with friends on a beautiful starry night on the shores of the Mediterranean. We will miss you dearly.
Erik Learned-Miller, 2012/07/30 02:18
I had gotten to know Mark better in the last two years working on bids for CVPR. He was a terrific person to work with, and did huge amounts of work for which he would never get any public credit. As echoed by others, his work was always of the highest quality. I was really looking forward to working with him on CVPR 2015, and I was deeply saddened by the news. The vision community and the world has really lost a great citizen.
Chris Williams, 2012/08/02 15:59
I got to know Mark though the PASCAL Visual Object Classes (VOC)challenges, from its inception in 2005 up to the current 2012 challenge. Mark was the key member of this project, taking the lead in organizing the data, the annotation party and software, the evaluation software, quality control and the workshops. The VOC challenges have become one of the leading benchmarks in object recognition, and this success rests squarely on Mark's shoulders.

More broadly, Mark made many important contributions to the computer vision field. Generally he had a modest and understated manner, but with a sharp sense of the key issues lying underneath. I will also treasure his dry sense of humour in our meetings and VOC conference calls. It makes me very sad to think I won't see Mark again; he will be greatly missed.
Nigel Jewell, 2012/08/06 19:04
Mark started his PhD at Bristol at the same time as me and it was immediately obvious to all post graduates and lecturers that he had quite a talent.

I had little contact with him after his move to Oxford, but I often wondered what has was up to and how he was getting on. It was very sad to hear that he is no longer with us.

I'm sure that I'll continue to think fondly of the times I shared his company, but also carrying a heavy heart knowing that his genius is no longer lighting up part of the computer vision community.
Bill Triggs, 2012/08/07 00:17
Mark has left us but we will all remember the tall, quiet guy in the corner with his gift for humorous understatement and penetrating insight, his very human kindness and his obsession with doing the right thing.
Stephan Liwicki, 2012/08/09 16:23
As an undergraduate student in Leeds, I did my final year project under Mark’s supervision. During this time I got to know him as a kind person who would not be shy to give his honest opinions of my work. This helped me greatly in developing my research skills and drive for correctness. I deeply thank him for that.

The news of Mark’s passing came as a shock to me. It saddens me that I won’t be able to see him at one of the conferences he regularly attended. However, I am happy to read that he has influenced so many in his too short life. I express my condolences to his friends and family.
James Charles, 2012/08/10 17:59
I was Mark’s first postdoc and worked with him for just under 2 years. However, even in this relatively short period of time we quickly built up a good rapport and Mark became a great mentor. His tuition and guidance was second to none. If you had a research problem, he was able to quickly offer solutions or point you in the right direction. Many of our progress meetings lasted for hours where Mark would be happy to discuss new ideas or dissect my current methodology to ensure accuracy. I remember on a number of occasions having over 3 hour long meetings with Mark. Being a diabetic myself, I quickly learnt to take a small packed lunch with me into a meeting to ensure I had enough snacks to last the duration.

Mark was extremely accurate in his explanations and demanded no less in return. He taught me to consider every step in my research thoroughly and coached me in the art of striving for accuracy. These lessons will stay with me forever and will no doubt benefit my research. I would like to thank Mark for choosing me as his postdoc, the experiences he gave me will shape my future.

I will also miss the times we would talk candidly about life in general and the jokes he would make. May you rest in peace Mark, you will be sincerely missed.
Andrew Calway, 2012/08/14 13:27
I was fortunate to know Mark during his time at Bristol and I was also one of his PhD examiners along with Bob Fisher. His wide knowledge, refreshing honesty and 'tell it as it is' approach to research always impressed me; as others have mentioned, if something got past Mark then it was worth pursuing.

He approached his viva in the same manner, carefully pointing out the limitations of what he had done and how he would do it differently next time, despite us having no reservations about the high quality of the work. At times, it was as though Mark had become both examiner and examinee, with us observing from the sidelines.

After he left Bristol I always looked forward to catching up with him at BMVC or similar; he was always good fun to be with. He was someone who I had huge respect for and I was not surprised at the significant impact that he had in such a short time. He will be greatly missed.
Rich Bowden, 2012/08/14 16:31
I first met Mark back in 2001/2 when we both worked on the FP5 project CogViSys at Oxford. Since then we’ve been friends and collaborators and recently started a new project together with AZ at Oxford. This project originated from Mark so it is sad that we will have to finish it without him but we will try to live up to his high standards, although I’m not sure we will succeed :-) We were always the smokers (until he gave up), hanging around outside the conference or late night in a Bar. Remember all those Caipirinha in Brazil or the beers in Beijing to name a few. I wonder who’s going to ask all the questions at BMVC now. We will miss you Mark.
Andrew Fitzgibbon, 2012/08/16 16:06
It has taken me some time to write this appreciation, partly because I want it to be worthy of Mark, which it is not, and partly because I have found it so hard to imagine him gone.

I first encountered Mark at BMVC 2001. The title of his talk, on evaluating image segmentation algorithms, was aligned with my own interests, but it's fair to say that the topic would generally have been expected to be a rather dry one. Thus it was more out of duty than excitement that I put down my laptop and raised my head to listen. Within minutes I realized that we were in the presence of one of the new stars of computer vision research. His set of competing algorithms included all the state-of-the-art algorithms one might have expected at the time, and one really dumb one (divide the image into blocks, ignoring the data entirely). You knew what was going to happen — the dumb algorithm would win sometimes — but Mark didn't just enjoy the great joke, but used this point of reference again and again to test his metrics, to give insight into the criteria, and ultimately to convince you that you had learned something. Josef speaks above about Mark's jokes tickling him for days — that talk still makes me chuckle a decade later.

Seeking him out over the rest of the conference, I found that this dry wit was not restricted to computer vision algorithms but to a wide variety of interests, and I must admit I did possibly smoke too many roll-up cigarettes in the process, as it meant a good excuse to chat. I knew we should get him to Oxford, and when he finished his PhD, he came to work with us, which was when I really saw how incredibly quickly and deeply he would understand every piece of work he heard or read. Like Alyosha, I always waited for his evaluation of my latest work, generally in trepidation but sometimes — when it passed muster — in delight. For me, Mark is the quintessential scientist (and I use the present tense, for he will always be with us in his work). He is quintessential because he cares not to persuade us how clever he has been, or to sell us his latest ideas, but to identify the essence of a problem, to understand the general principles underlying it, and to make rigorous steps towards a solution. Although he would probably never have considered those steps to be other than small ones, it's clear that even in the all too short time he was with us, he has made the field stronger. I know that his memory will continue to inspire us all to better things.
Derek Hoiem, 2012/08/18 13:31
My interaction with Mark was more occasional than many who have written here, but his example and conversations have been influential. I always sought out Mark for his incisive comments, somber optimism, sincere encouragement, and pleasant company. He made me think more carefully, and he helped to shift focus from personal to communal achievement. I am thankful for the time I’ve had with Mark.
Teo de Campos, 2012/08/18 13:32
I was lucky enough to have had 5 years of overlap with Mark in Oxford.
It was always nice to hear his thoughts, ideas and criticism about any work, including his own work.
Sometimes I wished I was a smoker to spend more time with him and Josef outside the lab (or pub).
He was one of those who made the seminars and reading group meetings really entertaining, with the sharpest questions and comments.
I'm glad that I've kept in touch with him and that I felt brave enough to present a seminar to his group late in 2010. With a couple of sentences, his feedback pretty much deconstructed the whole thing, but in a nice way that certainly made a positive impact to my research.

I'm glad that Mark inspires so many people, we need more people like him.
Aleksandar Kostic, 2012/08/19 17:15
I was introduced to Mark in Bristol on the occasion of Jelena’s graduation ceremony. There was no formality, no empty words – it took us less than five minutes to start discussing science. Passion and devotion when he was talking about his work were mixed with crispy humor which I’ll never forget. Few years later he came to Belgrade and we continued our discussions. His clear mind and open heart were so genuine and rare that I had a feeling as if we knew each other for years, as if we were old friends. And as the matter of fact – we were.
Mark was, no doubt, an outstanding scholar. But I will remember him also as a warm person and dear friend. And so it will remain.
Huiyu Zhou, 2012/08/27 21:15
Over the past few years I have had the opportunity to talk with Mark about image segmentation. He impressed me with his love of learning, thirst for knowledge, and deep understanding of the principles underlying the experimental results. During our conversations, he demonstrated an outstanding capability for connecting mathematics with relevant applications. My recent research work has benefited immensely from his keen insight and sophisticated questioning.

Mark had a well-honed and elegant written style. He showed a genuine concern for my writing and told me what was missed in my manuscripts. He did this because of the seriousness of his commitment to the research itself and presentation of the research outcomes. Being exceptionally quick to spot flaws in an argument, he often made his points with a large amount of supporting evidence.

Finally, I was deeply impressed by both his quiet, modest demeanour, and self-confidence. And I will never forget our conversations that continuously inspire me to aim for higher achievements.
Patrick Buehler, 2012/08/29 14:24
I first got to know Mark during my PhD studies in Oxford. We overlapped by only a couple of months, but even a week would have been enough to notice his strong intellect and his attention to details.
Mark had such a significant input on my PhD that he eventually became my official co-supervisor. His feedback during our weekly conference calls was invaluable, and I can say with certainty that my PhD would not have been the same without him.
It is with a shock that I learned about Mark's passing, and a big loss for the field of Computer Vision.
Tony Cohn, 2012/09/06 15:12
I only knew Mark since he came to Leeds, but it was clear immediately that he was a great appointment and would be a real asset to the School. And so it proved -- the comments above from his students and other members of the CV community here testify to the indelible impression he has made here, as indeed he has also made in the wider international community. I too have observed the razor sharp questions in seminars and the fantastic supervision he gave to his students. His passing came as a huge shock to me, and computer vision has certainly lost an exceptional researcher prematurely. He will be sorely missed by all those who knew him.
Phil Tresadern, 2012/09/07 12:55
Like everyone who has shared their memories here, I was privileged to work with Mark and admired the many qualities from which we would all benefit: his penetrating questions that brought clarity to what was complex; his understated manner and willingness to let others take the limelight; his encyclopedic knowledge of the field, with a rare combination of both breadth and depth; and his humanity towards colleagues.

If I were to share one memory that sticks in my mind about Mark, it would be from the first year of my PhD where he was leading the reading group on the topic of object recognition. To illustrate the frequent imperfections and inaccuracies of the matches found by Google Images, he did a quick search for 'tiger' using the laptop projector so we could all see the results. Among the various thumbnails of large cats among long grass were a few unusual matches, one of which he selected at random for a closer look before turning back to his audience to continue with his talk. It took a second or two for the image of an anonymous woman, stark naked and spreadeagled on a settee, with a delicate tattoo of a tiger's head on her crotch, to fill the 8ft high projector screen behind him, while he innocently continued to extol the virtues of some image descriptor or another. Thirty beetroot red faces eventually gave the game away, and Mark helpfully pointed out - in his characteristic, understated way - that "this is obviously a tattoo" before closing the image down and carrying on without batting an eyelid.

The Q&A session after every talk at every major conference will seem all the more empty and incomplete in his absence. He will be sadly missed but fondly remembered for many years to come.
Fei-Fei Li, 2012/10/09 16:34
Like many of us, I got to know Mark as the encyclopedic vision researcher when I just entered the field of computer vision, at the memorable ICCV 2003 conference. Mark spent a long time with me listening to my practice talk before my oral presentation, making such insightful comments that I almost wished to rewrite the entire paper based on his suggestions!

Ten years has passed since then, during which the field of computer vision has changed dramatically. It is without exaggeration to say that Mark has played a key and critical role in the past decade of vision research. The list of his contributions is long, including the PASCAL VOC Challenge (7 years of tireless and selfless work!!), his work in object recognition, and his influence to so many of us who have had the fortunate to be his colleagues and be inspired by his insights.

But remembering Mark is not just remembering his contribution in vision research. Mark is also an embodiment of humility, modesty and kindness as a person. It is people like Mark who make scientific community fun and warm-hearted. Papers can be written and forgotten. But a researcher and a friend like Mark will always remain in our hearts.
Hammad Qureshi , 2013/06/27 14:53
The news of the Mark's departure is like bolt from the blue for me. I cannot believe it. My heart aches.

I had a very brief stint with Mark. I met him at the BMVC held at Warwick where I was part of the organization team. Mark was a very fun person to be with. It was amazing to see how he warmed up to people around him. It was a treat to be around him. Mark was a great researcher and a warm person and I will forever remember his as such. It is so sad to loose someone with so much promise so soon.
Josiah Wang, 2013/07/01 21:32
As one of Mark's few students in Leeds, I have been putting off writing this tribute since I was unfortunately preoccupied with completing my PhD since his death. I know Mark would not have been happy for me to distract myself from my research for the sake of writing a half-hearted tribute, and I also wanted this tribute to do justice to Mark. Now that my PhD is all over and done with, I thought that the anniversary of his death is definitely the best time to post this.

I first met Mark back when I was doing my MSc back in 2007, when I approached him to discuss the possibilities of doing a PhD with him. That first meeting with him was in June 2007. Back then, he still had his long, beyond shoulder length hair. We had a long discussion in his office. It was 2.5 hours according to my records, very average for Mark's standards!

The second time I met Mark was in Sept 2007. I was scheduled to give a talk about my MSc project to one of the research groups in the school that afternoon at 2pm, and was also scheduled to meet Mark later at 4pm. To my horror, guess who turned up unannounced for the talk? I still clearly remember Mark saying "you didn't tell me that you're giving a presentation..." in his usual wry tone as he entered the room. Of course, right after the talk I was barraged with his usual sharp comments and questions. After that, we had our meeting in his office which lasted until 6pm (only 2 hours!). He was quite upbeat and excited after my talk, probably from seeing me being enthusiastic about my project. That was the meeting when my project ideas were formed, and he asked me to email him a draft proposal based on what we've discussed. I sent him the draft two days later, and he reply was "A very good first attempt. I have re-written trying to make the idea clearer and more accessible to a general reader". In true Mark Everingham fashion, it was completely rewritten, way better than what I've given him.

I started my PhD a year later in Sept 2008, arriving right after BMVC 2008 which was held in Leeds (and where Mark was the main organiser). My very first meeting with Mark on my first day went great. I was asked to do a long list of reading, do quite a bit of data collection, writing codes to perform some other data collection, and write some lovely MATLAB code for some experiments. That was just my first day. I also remember also in one of our earliest meetings, I was caught unprepared when he asked me to specify Bayes Theorem. Since then, Mark kept reminding me that I should always read and re-read his favourite book -- Christopher Bishop's "Neural Network and Pattern Recognition" from 1995!

I would love to ramble on, but this tribute is already getting really long. I think it's better if I just provide some insights about Mark from the point of view of his student. The biggest thing I would like to highlight about Mark is his dedication towards his students. He organised a reading group among his own students when we first started (we all learnt a lot from this). He was also very "hands-on" especially in our first few years, going through and modifying our posters with a fine-toothed comb, up to the point of imposing the layout and the colour scheme! We even had a "rehearsal" for our poster presentation. He actually mentioned to some of us during a breakfast at a conference that we were his first students and he wanted us all to do well.

He was also extremely passionate about his research. I remember during a supervision meeting where he told me "you should be dreaming about butterflies by now!" (I was working on recognising butterflies). And he proceeded to talk about how he once mumbled and performed British Sign Languages in his sleep and woke up his flatmate in the process.

During the write-up of my thesis, it felt like he was still there giving me guidance even after his death. There were a few occasions when I was trying to think of solutions to address the loopholes to some of my experiments, and then as if enlightened I recalled the various things he suggested during our meetings. At other times the answers were right there in front of me, previously scribbled in my meeting notebook. It was as if he already foresaw the problem and has already given me the solution without me realising it at the time. This is a true testimony to his strong foresight.

It has been one year since Mark's unexpected death, but his legacy will definitely live on in the minds and hearts of those who have had the privilege to have known and to have worked with him. It is true that we never appreciate something until it's gone.
David Tweed, 2014/01/20 15:16
I think Mark must have passed away literally just after I last contacted him, and I've only just discovered this. I knew Mark quite closely at Bristol, and although I hadn't had much contact with him after moving away from the field, the thought that I'll never see him again is a huge shock and loss. My best wishes to all his relatives and friends, and I hope that something of his ingenuity and above all experimental rigour lives on in the field.
James Paterson, 2014/01/24 11:03
Very sorry to hear about Mark's passing. I knew Mark when he was a post-doc at Oxford (I was doing my D. Phil). Mark was always a pleasure to spend time with and I am sure he will be very much missed by the community.
Nahum Kiryati, 2014/11/04 10:48
I have never met Mark Everingham, but I have recently seen some of his research results, that are highly remarkable and impressive. I am really sorry to learn that he is no longer with us.
Amanda, 2014/12/16 05:36
I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Mark. Though I have never seen him, I recently know his contribution to the research of computer vision and read his paper. Wish the departed saint stay in peace, the living be strong.
amir monadjemi, 2015/03/03 12:01
I've just heard about that sad loss. He was a brilliant mind and CV society has lost an excellent researcher. May god blesses him.