Last Friday, we received the very sad news that Maarten van Someren passed away on Thursday 27 June. Maarten was a member of our faculty staff at the Informatics Institute, specialised in applications of machine learning to real world problems.
Maarten started his career in 1983 at UvA and has since touched the hearts and minds of numerous of students. In the early 90’s, The Netherlands was a pioneer in teaching Artificial Intelligence (AI). Maarten played a key role in defining and teaching of the curricula of both the bachelor’s and master’s programmes in AI.
As a psychologist by training, he witnessed and co-shaped the first wave of artificial intelligence, strengthening his life-long interest in both human and artificial learning and the relationship between these two.
Maarten has played a major role in the development of the national artificial intelligence agenda in the Netherlands, and is a founding father of BNAIC, the Belgium/Dutch conference in AI. He was an active researcher until the very end. His last paper appeared in 2018 in the proceedings of the conference he himself initiated: BNAIC 2018.
Maarten was known for being a very conscientious person. He took a genuine interest in other people and always carefully probed his students and colleagues alike to elicit their views and to engage in meaningful conversation.
But above all, Maarten was a fantastic person and colleague to have around. We will remember Maarten as a compassionate friend who was always helpful to others. He will be dearly missed.
In room C3.154D there is a condolence register where you can leave a personal message for his family.
Maarten's funeral will take place on Thursday 4 July at 13:30 at Zorgvlied, Amsteldijk 273 Amsterdam.
Our hearts and thoughts go out to his family and friends.