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Today (13/11/2014), I learnt of Professor Steve Howard's death. I was deeply saddened to hear of his passing. Steve was my lecturer for HCI and Usability which I undertook as an elective in my Masters of Information Systems. He was such an inspirational Lecturer who taught me to look at building IT systems from a User's perspective and I have done so ever since. Thank you Steve you taught me so much in one semester. The world has lost another of its' special people —Ashley Parkinson
Karen and I deeply regret your passing, our deepest sympathy to your entire family. I remember when we first met in our 1st apprentice year in 1978 and became friends. Our love of rock and folk music surpassed almost everything. Your thirst for knowledge and extremely deep thoughts will forever stay with me.
Goodnight, Howie. —Nige Priestley
In my final semester (of Mechatronics Engineering & Computer Science) at Melb.University, I had picked Usability Engineering as my elective, Steve was my teacher (with Frank). He taught me to love my subjects again, he really knew how to teach, made it all so enjoyable, i couldn't resist joining his other class- Pervasive Computing too! The best teacher i ever had throughout my course. Such an inspiring and humble person with so much passion. I will never forget him or the positive influence he had on me as a budding student entering the real world. He will be missed deeply. May your soul R.I.P. —Vibha (Rubdi) Aditya
My deep condolences to the family of our dear Professor Steve Howard. It's shocking to learn about it more than a year after his passing. His work & passion has always been an inspiration to me through the spirit of making the world a friendlier place to live in. May you Rest in Peace. —Ian Phoon, 2012 Sem1
Oddly enough, I never got to meet Steve in person. We only exchanged emails. He is the one who encouraged me to apply for my PhD at UniMelb though I feared that I would not be successful. On top of that, he agreed to be my supervisor. I am eternally grateful. May his spirit of encouragement, passion and goodness live on! —Kagonya
I have only just heard about Steve's sad and sudden death. He was such a kind person. He invited me twice out to Australia to work with him on research both at Swinburne and at Melbourne. Whilst I was there he pointed Nigel Beacham and myself towards a new area of research which eventually led to us working on Dyslexia. He also visited us in the UK at Loughborough and we had many fruitful and interesting discussions as well as a beer or two! He will be sadly missed at Melbourne where he was the main mover in setting up the HCI research group. My sincere condolences to Anna and Alec. —Jim Alty
Steve was my supervisor back in 2005 during my 5th semester. He was a great supervisor and our entire group cherished his knowledge and personality and the way he kept challenging us, he made us do better and be better.
I got back in touch with him in the winter of 2012/2013 because I was going to Australia in March 2013 and wanted to visit the department in Melbourne. I have such great memories from this trip. Steve was so friendly and patient. He spent time with me and made sure I got as much out of my short visit as possible. Also he recommended my husband and I went to see St. Kilda, which we did. I was about to send Steve an email thanking him for everything regarding my visit, when I learned he had died.
I still think about him once in a while and I wish you, his family all the best. No doubt you have lost a great man, husband and father. —Jane B
Steve and I were working together on a project for AISRF. I am shocked about the news. He was very hard working and determined for his tasks. I miss him —Madhulika from India
Well Steve the news still hasnt sunk in! We met in Class of 1986 at UCL. You were amazing and intellecutal but unassuming. You inspired, and certainly knew how to lead a full life. Like the ripples created by a pebble your memories and inspriation will transcend. RIP, Steve. Anna, Alec our deepest sympathies and hope the future holds well for you both. —Dipak
I was shocked & very saddened to hear of Steve's sudden passing in April. I had the pleasure to know and respect Steve from the early days of CHISIG and his time at Swinburne in the early 90s. Over the following years he developed HCI research into its current and well deserved prominence at Melbourne University. I offer my deepest sympathy to his family, whom I have not met, and I will miss his kindness and warmth - he was a true gentleman. While I had the pleasure to work with Steve on CHISIG matters over the years (via the internet) it was really only at OZCHI conferences that we had the opportunity to meet in person and catch up. He will be a great loss to the HCI and Human Factors communities at large. Farewell Steve. —Roger Hall, Sydney
I met Steve around the time he was setting up SCHIL. We shared a passion for user centred design and had many great discussions together on the topic. Steve was a fine scholar and friend, who made a great contribution to human factors and ergonomics in Australia, and internationally. He was one of nature's true gentlemen: kind, gentle and compassionate. As a friend of the same vintage, I feel we have lost a great colleague and friend. To his family, please accept my condolences, and those of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society of Australia. —Mike Regan, President, HFESA.
Steve was a guest lecturer for one of our 3rd year BIS course. He was a great person with immense knowledge that inspired all of us to succeed in our lives & career. My sincere condolences to his family and relatives. —Akshat
Steve was a great lecturer and an inspiration. My greatest condolences to his family and friends. Rest in peace. —Chris Y
I met Steve a few times in the emerging technology subject. He was a very gentle and considerate lecturer. I was impressed by the topics that he taught and developed strong interests in HCI. Still can't believe you have gone, I miss u. My greatest condolences to his family and friends. —Olivia Song
Steve was very kind as my lecturer. It is very hard for us to accept this deeply regretful news. His gentle smile will be remembered and missed forever. —Fay
I met Steve in Leningrad in 1994. We had warm russian beer at a bench in the middle of a roundabout. He wanted to buy a balalaika for his son. He told me about HCI in Australia. It was a great afternoon, that made me feel that it would be possible to be at home in HCI. Steve, you will be missed. —Olav
Still hard to come to terms that such a kind, caring, compassionate man has been taken from this world too soon. He was a leader, a mentor, and a good friend. I'll miss not being able to have a chat over a coffee or glass of wine again. You will be greatly missed Steve, and will be remembered in our hearts forever. —Dan
Hard to come to terms with nor adequate words, and lamenting those future conversations that will never be. Clearly his parting was way way too early, but even so he has managed to leave a great and extensive legacy. He was my close colleague and my boss when I managed the IDEA Lab from 2000 through to 2005 and a pleasure it was, every day spent there. In all that time I never heard a harsh word about anyone from Steve, an occasional raised eyebrow was as judgemental as he ever got. That doesn't suggest he wasn't a Critic - he was in fact an excellent one in the proper measure of the role: he praised a speaker, a budding researcher highlighting what was good in their work, and gave constructive, knowledgable, often deeply insightful advice regarding the rest - most generously so. His invitations to Interaction Design Group seminars finished with three words that stand out as writ large by him in word and in deed: 'All are Welcome'. My heartfelt condolences to Anna, Alec, other Family and Friends —Steve Goschnick
I was shocked when I heard this news. He was a very good lecturer and he inspired me a lot. My condolences to his family and all the people who love him. May God bless him and all the people he left behind. —Mario
Steve was a wonderful collaborator, an inspiring mind and a very thoughtful person. I wish we could have had more opportunities to work alongside him and learn from him, as well as enjoy his company. Steve - your kind and relaxed nature mixed with your calculated and considered approach to your work and relationships will be sorely missed. —Alisa
Steve was a true gentleman in every sense of the word. His calm demeanour and warm smile will be sorely missed by all. —Mat
On the eve of the day we gather at Aberdyfi, Mid Wales, UK to scatter half your ashes my Stevie bach, the love of my life, Daddy to our Son Alec. Thank You for letting me be part of the incredible journey that was ours through the highs and the lows. Your story will be told as an inspiration to future generations XX —Anna Howard
Steve was mentioned by name (and photo, and this site) at the closing session of the CHI 2013 conference by Wendy Mackay as one of our HCI/CHI community whose passing was deeply regretted and who will be missed. —Dianne Murray
I'm so very sad to hear that Steve passed away. He was a graceful, lovely person. I met Steve when I worked in Melbourne and participated in the local CHI community. —Suzanne Currie
I knew Steve some years ago as a colleague and great guy. Shocked and saddened to hear of his passing My condolences to family and friends. —Rob Pedlow
My introduction to the IDL was very recent, and I've never talked to Steve, but as a Masters student I was SO looking forward to a seminar where I might benefit from his wisdom and gentle criticism...if I feel bereft I can only imagine how those who knew him far better can be experiencing this terrible time. My thoughts are with you. —Irith
Steve had a great nose for wine, he also enjoyed drinking it :) I hope the conversation and wine is still flowing wherever you are. Cheers! —shawn
My deepest sympathy to Steve's family and colleagues. He was such an important bridge between the academic and commercial UX community. It's not just what he did, but how he did it - his style, humour and compassion for others will continue to be an inspiration. —Naomi Heagney
Clare and I met Steve at UCL in the Ergonomics Masters program. My first memory of him is sitting next to him on a bus back from a field trip to some nuclear power control room or similar. We chatted and he found out that I was a vegetarian - and then proceeded to hammer me about it for over a hour - seriously I thought, this guy has got to be kidding - and once we stopped at a pub for a meal I found out he was doing just that - kidding!
Clare and I later spent a lovely weekend on the Welsh coast with Steve and Anna - and we have a 'lovely' photo of him racing up the staircase in underpants.
Occasional catch ups in Melbourne with Steve and Anna and Alec reaffirmed the link for us, having also moved to Australia.
With the pride of fellow class mates we have watched Steve's career and the profession will be the poorer without him.
Farewell to an all-round good bloke.
Anna, Clare and I are thinking of you and send our support and love to you and Alec.
I don’t know whether you had any warning at all, but either way we can’t imagine how hard it must be for you and Alec to have lost your partner/father so soon. —Leon and Clare
Its not dark yet, but it's getting there.. —Bob
Steve, so many great memories with the best friend anyone could ever have: Crazy nights in Liverpool, the parties in Rock ferry, live music in terrible bars and the Jazz at the philharmonic pub in the 70’s. John Cooper Clarke, Queen at Knebworth in 86, getting stopped for speeding on my old Suzuki, Blackpool and all the guys at Capenhurst. The pubs in Leytonstone , The Bow flyover affair !! It was a privilege to be the friend of such a kind and calm guy who talked us out of trouble as teenagers. A glass raised to you on reflection of so many happy memories, you will be missed by all, my thoughts are with Anna, Alex, Pam and family. —Chris Boswell
Steve, your inspirational thinking and genuinely passionate and kind nature will be missed. It was a pleasure knowing you and working with you! —Olivia
I first met Steve not long after arriving in Australia, and immediately warmed to him. How could you not? It's been a pleasure and a privilege to know Steve, to sit outside for a drink at University House on my too infrequent visits to Melbourne, find the hottest curry on the menu in Cambridge curry houses, to disagree over the merits of football (soccer) v cricket, and to while away the time in pubs and bars. My deepest condolences to those closer to him. He will be sorely missed by all. —Stephen Viller
I always knew that I was in the presence of a great man when I was in your company. You commanded respect from everyone that crossed your path, with your gentle presence and your knowing ways.
I am so glad that I came to your inaugural Professorial lecture "Human Centred Computing: science, values and innovation" in 2010. You were humbled to see some of us from the industry make the effort to come along...for us it was a sign of respect for the great man. And from the words shared here, it is obvious to see why you commanded such respect from people.
You have rocked our worlds with your sudden departure...and you leave a gaping hole in all our lives. I tip my hat to you Steve for the big life that you lived and for the impact you had on so many people's lives. —Patrizia Bordignon
"What would Steve say?" This is a question that influences researchers around the world as we attempt to design technology that makes peoples' lives better. What an incredible legacy you have left Steve. As we deal with the shock and sadness of your sudden departure from this world (obviously your brilliance must have been needed in another dimension) the impact that you have had in shaping the way we think about design just grows. Thank you for this wonderful gift you leave behind. In doing, you are always with us. —Christine Satchell
"See you next Saturday 5.30 at the Espy" was the last thing Steve said to me, less than two weeks ago... We had spent the day with food and wine, and were winding down in his kitchen, continuing a conversation about the future that we started over a decade ago. I went to see the band, as agreed, still thinking that he would turn up somehow. I will miss our conversations, the music, and most of all a great friend. —Jesper
One of the good guys and there aren't that many. Inspiring as a teacher – made me feel I had something unique and worthwhile to offer. Awe-inspiring as a researcher. I appreciated his valuing of creativity, humanity, music, food and reflection. I feel lucky to have had the chance to work with and learn from Steve. —Karen Mecoles
Steve was a wonderful colleague. We have collaborated on two big studies, and his intellect, insights and enthusiasm were a big part of their success. I still find it hard to believe he has gone. I miss him. —Ron Borland
Steve showed me how to be better in so many ways. He so artfully combined intellectual pursuits with leadership with tutelage with fun. It's hard to believe that I will not be able to see him again or hear his voice. It's hard to come to terms with. But I am thankful I knew him as supervisor, mentor and friend. My thoughts are with you Anna and Alec at this very difficult time. We are grieving with you. We will all miss Steve so very much. —Connor
In my own name and on behalf of the Health and Biomedical Informatics group, we send our heartfelt condolences to Prof. Howard's family and MSE/CIS colleagues. We will not forget his academic leadership and friendship. A great loss. He will be missed greatly. He was appreciated and loved by those of us who had the privilege of working with him.
Descansa en paz. —Prof. Fernando Martin-Sanchez and HBIR team (Medical School)
I met Steve through my husband and had the pleasure of meeting him several times in Denmark and Australia. I will remember Steve as a very kind and calm friend. He always spoke with love and admiration of Alec and I remember talks about parenting and all the little things that matter to parents and children as they grow up. I remember trips and talks in Denmark and Australia and know that he will be greatly missed by his friends and colleagues in Aalborg. It has been a couple of years since I last saw Steve. I will miss him and his presence in my mind. All my thoughts and love go to Alec and Anna. —Charlotte
Steve, it was a pleasure working with you over the years. You contributed so much to the HCI field, and were an inspiration to myself and so many other researchers. I shall miss our lively discussions on research, food and parenting - sometimes all at once. Not many people understand the logic of giving your son a set of knives for a birthday gift! Cheers. —Hilary Davis
On behalf of Suzanne Garland and John Wark, We worked with Steve on two amazing projects YFHI, (Young Female Health Initiative), and more recently, on a Vitamin D Study (Safe D - Improving Vitamin D status and related health in young women) and were privileged to have Steve's thoughtful and insightful comments, whilst we worked towards these grants and projects. We are so sorry to hear this sad news and the entire teams from YFHI and Safe D, will surely miss you Steve. Thanks for being a great colleague and friend, Suzanne Garland and John Wark. —Suzanne and John
Calm, cool and collected, softly spoken highly respected.
Steve will be sorely missed, however his presence will live on... —Joanne
You will always be "Scary Steve" for me - with greatest affection for your gentle ways, highest admiration for your abundant intelligence, and everlasting awe for your limitless generosity. With Love. —Jeni Paay
Much loved and badly missed, Steve was a star who made space for others to shine too. —Wally
Maybe you were not aware of your deep influence on me, but it was like being a child adopted and having your support in this new world. I was swelled with pride to be chosen by you and felt safe standing beside you all the way. Now, I don't feel that you're gone because you are present in my heart and my mind forever, helping me to become someone a little like you. —Behnaz
Steves great nature, passion for his work and community of practice will be missed. My condolences to the Howard family. —Pete Grierson
Please accept my heartfelt sympathies for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. —Antonette Mendoza
A true gentleman academic. Sorely missed. —Tony
I first met Steve in 1984 when he was a student at the UCL Ergonomics Unit and I was a Scientific Officer at the National Physical Laboratory. I made one of the best decisions in my life when I chose him as the student we would sponsor through his degree and with whom I would work for the next two years. I am so glad to have been there at the start of his career and devastated by its all-too-early ending. Read more
We carried out some of the earliest research on classifying HCI Evaluation techniques and he presented the work at the Interact '87 conference and at an EFISS Symposium, which gave him the chance to go to New Orleans, at which he was overjoyed. After graduation we kept in touch through moves to Surrey, the Midlands and, finally, to Australia. I never managed to visit him there as he both found his place and stimulated the Australasian HCI community but I watched, with pride, as his career developed, and we did meet up at various times over the years in different countries. In 1996 I appointed him as an Editorial Board Member of the journal, Interacting with Computers. He worked with great enthusiasm and expertise on the journal, producing two Special Issues and promoting Australian HCI research as well as encouraging his students and colleagues to write and review for us. IwC's strong position in Australia and New Zealand came significantly from Steve's impact and influence.
Others have written so well about him that I am at a loss for words. I have lost someone who was a lifelong colleague, but was also almost a soulmate. We had an instant rapport, based on an almost shared birthday and a shared industrial working-class background and upbringing; Birkenhead and Paisley aren't that different, and being the first in your family to go to University does mark you. We remained friends and I got to meet Anna, and then Alec, and made visits with little children in tow: Anna has the old photographs to prove that Katy and Alec really did meet as babies! I cannot say how grateful I was to both Steve and Anna for looking after my independent-minded 18 year old daughter when she travelled alone to Australia for a gap-year: she was welcomed into a home away from home with them.
I wish I could be there for the celebration of his life, and furious that it is now over. It has been wonderful reading the messages here and I have decided to create a memorial issue in the journal, to honour Steve's life and work. After all, as Anna asked me to point out, Another Birkenhead lad done good.
Anyone with any sense had already left town
He was standing in the doorway looking like the Jack of Hearts
He moved across the mirrored room, "Set it up for everyone," he said
Then everyone commenced to do what they were doing before he turned their heads (Bob Dylan)
The last time I saw Steve he came up to me after I gave a seminar presentation and, in his gentle way offered considerate and valuable feedback and advice. I came away from the seminar thinking how lucky I was to be working alongside such supportive colleagues. Steve’s generosity and genuine interest in other people’s work fostered a productive and collegial environment in the Interaction Design Lab, making it a great place to work. His absence will be deeply felt. I am sorry that I cannot be there tonight. I will be thinking of you all. —Jenny Waycott
Steve, you’ve been an inspirational mentor and a role model to all of us at DIS. You will be dearly missed! :( —Nilma Perera
My sincere condolences to Steve's family and friends. I only knew Steve a short time at Swinburne Computer Human Interaction Laboratory, but long enough to see a gifted academic and a keen ear for good music. Steve's legacy to the academic sphere is significant and will be sadly missed. —Glenn Elliott
Steve was an inspiring and committed teacher. His commitment to his students inspired junior staff, myself included. He will be greatly missed by many —Mike Hull
To Anna and Alec - I'm so sorry for your loss. I worked with Steve at DIS for four years and he was such a gentle, fun and compassionate man. I can't imagine how much you miss him now. My thoughts are with you. I'm not able to go to the memorial but will be there in spirit. A wonderful man, his life cut short far too early. Love from Vicki
Steve, I'll miss your company. An English beer in the sun, Australia versus Europe wine challenges. long conversations about anything, the cricket which it took you emigrating to Australia to appreciate. And music, hours of music. There was never any excuse for Jethro Tull.
You were a big part of me ditching the job and going to university. Academia was your natural habitat and seeing you immerse yourself with enthusiasm and such pleasure was an inspiration.
I remember first calling at your parents place to see your sister, and you veted the suitability of my record collection before I was allowed in. The protective big brother. Your sister is so proud of you. She always got upset when you left.
I'll remember the fun we had at Aberdovey as our kids grew up, the girls in Australia and Alec and Anna in France, counting the shooting stars and satellites.
It was great and I will miss it all. Best wishes to everyone on Friday night. Enjoy. Steve would have wholeheartedly approved. Let the music be loud and the beer dark. —John Ford
My last memory of Steve was him smiling at us all as we left his house two weeks ago, having shared a special day with him in the Mornington Peninsula. He'd convinced me to ride on the back of his Tiger motorbike whilst the others went there in the car. In an email to me the day before, he said, in his mischievous way, "Hope you are steeling yourself for the motorcycle tomorrow, I've told the bike and its looking forward to meeting you...."
I feel privileged to have known Steve and will miss him dearly. —Yvonne
You appear in many of my favourite childhood memories.
The one that usually springs to mind is when we came to see you in Australia, it was cold, windy and honestly quite treacherous at the beach...before I had time to finish my thought, there you were stripped down to your trunks wading into the waves without a second thought!
I can't quite believe we won't see you again. The only thing that makes this easier is remembering the great times that were had during childhood. Time spent in Aberdovey was no exception to this and I'm sure revisiting there will evoke many more happy memories, before making it your final resting place.
You will be remembered and missed always.
For me, Steve symbolised HCI in Australia. I am so very sad - a huge loss to the HCI community the world over. —Shailey
Unc. About ten years ago during a visit to Oz, we went on an impromptu night out. We started in the espy and ordered far too many beers all at once. Realising this, we hid the opened beers up our jacket sleeves and made our way very straight armed, to the greyhound. And this... was the first time i saw you dance. You threw some serious shapes to Kyle Minogue- the likes of which no man or woman can ever dream of replicating! And when I think of you, that's what I remember. Really sorry if that's an uncool story. I think you always knew- at least I hope you knew- that I placed you in high esteem. Never giving a straightforward answer, and equally, never accepting a straightforward answer, you made me question any decisions, particularly when it came to work. And i'll miss that more than i can say. Because everyone needs a Steve to test them. I already miss waking up to random texts from you, and whooping you at songpop. And yes ok, Bob Dylan (uncle Bob) is king of the world, and red wine should cost more than £3.50 a bottle, and I should probably get round to learning to play the guitar instead of just saying I will. But no, I won't stop painting my toenails. Sorry. I do love you. —Jo x
I met Steve for the first time in 2000 when visiting Melbourne as a PhD student. Since then, I have had the pleasure of working with him on different research and teaching activities. Steve had many qualities as a human and as an HCI researcher, but I will especially remember his extraordinary calmness. Thanks for everything, Steve. —Mikael
So hard to believe - what a huge loss. My heart especially goes out to his Melbourne colleagues and to his family. I remember first meeting Steve as a relatively newbie phd student in an OzCHI doctoral colloquium in the early-mid 90s. He was hugely generous and collegial and of course incredibly knowledgeable. His passion for defining his research interests to make a difference and contribute to improving real societal issues inspired me. I met him last at CSCW in Feb and was reminded again of the wonderful warm erudite humble person that was Steve - will always remember his big smile and glint in the eye. Such an impactful life. —Geraldine
Uncle Steve, I have some of the best memories from my childhood from when we were all together. Holidays with everyone in Aberdyfi, York, Wales, Paris and Australia were some of the happiest times I’ve had, and it makes me so sad that you won’t be here for more happy family times. You were so kind, ridiculously clever, and FUNNY (peeing in mum and dad’s garden must be one of your finest moments as I still remember it more than 10 years on). I’m so glad we all had so many lovely times together, and have such happy memories that will always make me smile :) You will genuinely be so missed by all of us, Lots of love, —Amy xxx
Steve was big. Big personality, big smile, big voice, big presence. Big in my life: I suspect I wouldn’t have achieved as much without his pushing, challenging, partnering and collaborating. We must have met at a CHISIG meeting or OzCHI92. I remember him visiting The Hiser Group when we still worked out of our home, then interviewing candidates for our joint grant to build PUTL when we’d only just moved to our Prahan office. OzCHI and Interact committees. Coffee on Glenferrie Road.
I found Steve intimidating at first. Sometimes he’d get a little too cerebral for me, and I’d say “woah, Steve, bring that down to my level, I don’t get what you’re saying” because I wanted to understand. He fired up my imagination with possibilities. He was also one of the most grounded people I know, with a joy of life and infectious passion for his work. No wonder I loved being around him.
Since moving back to the States, I’ve seen him once at Melbourne Uni and stayed in touch via email and social media. Stealing songs from Last.fm. Checking his Washedrind Twitter feed (a brief flash). Thank you for being in my life, Steve. I miss you more than I imagined. —Sarah Bloomer
So very sad to hear of this sudden loss. Steve was an absolute inspiration to me both in terms of his zest for research and his approach to life. —Matt Jones
Steve a very kind and genuine man and he was someone I very much looked up to. I greatly appreciate the support and encouragement that he gave me at Melbourne - always generously - and have very fond memories of my times with him. My deepest and sincere condolences to his family and friends. —Keith Cheverst
Who will change the time on my cooker clock when the clocks go forwards or back?
Who will visit, change the settings on our computer to the point of no return and leave us stumped?
The end of each visit has always hurt a little, this goodbye hurts so much.
Don't you worry your boy and your wife will be well loved by us and all around them.
Miss you so much. I'm furious with you.
Love you. —Pam. X
It was my privilege to have known Steve, and benefited from his wisdom. My deepest sympathy to those closet to him. Farewell. —Mark Apperley
I have resisted this site and writing here for as long as I could. Somehow, by resisting, I have hope that maybe I will be told that this has all been a hoax, a cruel joke, or a bad dream. After all, what can you say when you lose one of the very few people who have deeply shaped you as a teacher, researcher, and thinker. Steve was on the interview panel when I first applied for a job at the University of Melbourne. And when I got the job, it was to teach in Steve’s subject. A few years later, he became one of my PhD supervisors - guiding, mentoring, advising, and throughout, finding ways to help me grow intellectually and professionally. I am indeed very lucky to have been one of Steve’s students. To honour and continue his legacy, I can only hope to do my best to pass on some of his wisdom and generosity when growing the next generation of researchers. —Tuck
I just wanted to start by saying thank you so much to all involved in creating this website, I am sure he would have approved of using the internet and research he was involved in over pens and paper. What can I say, I didn't see much of what he did at work and what I did I often didn't understand but as a father, he was the best I could have hoped for and I miss him terribly! At home like at work he always used to challenge my ideas with a question that would make me rethink what I had said. From a young age he always made time for me and taught me so much about life in general, including Bob Dylan and many other musicians that he loved. I am thankful that I had 24 years of my life with Dad around and it has made me a better person because of it. —Alec Howard
“How does this make the world a better place?” Steve would ask every now and then in a seminar or a meeting. Steve certainly made the world a better place for my colleagues and me. He was there for me for the last 6 years, even when he was recovering after coming back home from hospital. He just said in his typical understatement “I just wobbled a bit” and then he read my thesis draft, which I doubt, would have aided his recovery. I miss his generosity, his ability to be very clear with very few words, and his ability to stay calm and smile no matter how busy things were. I wish I had a chance to thank him for all his support in person. —Bernd
Those of us in the "Queensland mob" who were at Swinburne and SCHIL with Steve in the 90s have been extremely saddened by this news. I recall so clearly from those days Steve's humanity, wise counsel, and unfailingly equable nature—qualities that took him to the heights of his profession. This is a huge loss for so many communities. —Penny Sanderson
What a wonderful, human, caring person! I met Steve several times over the past few years, and I was very sad to hear of his death. Such a loss :( —Greg Adamson
And the table's full and overflowed
And the corner sign
Says it's closing time
So I'll bid farewell and be down the road.
(Restless Farewell, Dylan).
This task of Remembering Steve shouldn't have been required for many, many years. He was gifted in interactions well beyond and deeper than the mere human-computer kind. I'm overseas and regret not being able to be part of the face-to-face gathering on Friday night -- which would much more reflect his way of being. Vale, Steve. —Greg Ralph
Incredibly sorry to hear that we´ve lost Steve, who was an incredibly supportive, generous and inspiring supervisor for me. My heart goes out to his nearest and dearest. —Matt Daniel
Steve was a wonderful soul who was a fantastic mentor, close friend, boss and 'big brother' to me. I loved him a lot. It's impossible to find the words to describe this amazing man--my life has been enriched greatly by his influence and I selfishly wish that this could have continued for a while longer. However, Steve never managed to explain cricket sufficiently enough to me to convert me (or perhaps I can never understand it). Nonetheless, I remind myself of how many of us have benefited from his presence and calm demeanour. I am a better person on so many levels (e.g., parenting!) for having known him, and hope to apply more of what I learned from Steve to my life and to my interactions with others. —Peter Benda
Thank you Steve for being an amazing supervisor and mentor, for believing in me and my work and for sharing so generously your experience and knowledge with me. You have always been, and will continue to be, an important part of who I am as a researcher. Will miss you. —Sofia Pardo
Steve was always such a positive guy and contributed such a lot. I really enjoyed knowing Steve, the conversations we had and the bits of work we did together when he visited York in the 1990s. It was a real pleasure to see him back in the UK last summer. He will be sorely missed. My heart goes out to his family. —Andy Dearden
We’ve lost so much: a keen mind, witty insights, caring empathy, knowledge and creativity, thoughtfulness; an invaluable colleague whose impact shines in the love and respect felt by those who worked with him. Farewell! —Justin
Very sorry to see you gone Steve we enjoyed some nice chatter on the 1960s and the radicals and Yippies who inhabited - you will be sorely missed—Nick Sharman
I met Steve wanting to do a PhD after being drawn to his academic interests in the social aspects of computing and design. It took about 5 minutes into having a coffee with him that I knew I wanted him as my supervisor. I was not let down. Steve supervised me for over 3 years. Each supervision meeting, each constructive critique is a memory to now cherish. His touch will be felt in all my future work. Losing Steve so soon is a huge loss not only to me, but our research group, and to the whole HCI community. My sincerest condolences to Steve's family and close friends at this difficult time. —Joji Mori
Sincerely sorry to hear of Steve's passing my thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues for their loss. I had the pleasure of working with Steve in 2011 - he will be greatly missed. —Morag Rees
I first met Steve at the Doctoral Consortium of OZCHI 2003 in Brisbane. I presented my very first thoughts around my PhD topic, and Steve was one of the panel members. He was superbly knowledgeable to an extent that I only started to grasp much later. He was stern but genuine in his critique. He was witty. And his advice influenced my thinking in a positive way. His research made a huge contribution to HCI in Australia and internationally. My condolences to his family. Far too early, Steve. —Marcus Foth
Steve's the kind of guy you think of when you're pondering how to do the right thing and do well in life. What would Steve do? - I'll keep asking it. —Greg
Steve, a life lived well. Creative, contributor, collaborator - someone who passed on to others and made their lives better for it. Vale. —jodie moule
So sorry to hear this sad news. Steve was always generous in his sharing and exploration of new ideas with colleagues. Will always remember his Friday seminars for research students as being inclusive, supportive and informative. As a tutor, he was encouraging and great to worth with, as he treated us as an important part of the team, and was willing to listen to ideas, rather than being directive and taking us for granted. Vale, Steve. Condolences to your family and all your friends. —Janette
I first met Steve about 3 and half years ago, in the context of the formation of the Institute for a Broadband-Enabled Society. We both ended up on the Executive Committee of IBES where we co-chaired the Social Infrastructure and Communities theme. For me, Steve was one of those rare people who combine so many qualities: wonderfully sharp in his observations, generous towards his colleagues, able to work across academic and industry contexts, and an enthusiastic champion of innovative research. I personally benefited enormously from his insights and advice, and only a month ago Steve agreed to join the advisory board of our new research unit in Public Cultures. My heart goes out to his family. He will be much missed. —Scott McQuire
Steve was one of those rare people whose brilliance never seemed to reduce his personal warmth. The big smile... —Gerry Gaffney
Dear Steve, thank you for being such an incisive, honest and interesting guy. You helped guide me when I was fresh out of Uni, and years later your kind words about my singing meant a lot to me. May there always be terrific blues music wherever you are. We love and miss you. —Mimi
Steve had such a warm, generous, and infectiously mischievous spirit, talking with him was always such a pleasure. I was always left with a sense of him not just as a first-rate researcher but a first-rate human being, and someone who just seemed to have things figured out. What a loss. My thoughts are with his family, friends, and colleagues there. I wish I could be there with you to celebrate his life. —Paul Dourish
So sad, so young, so talented RIP. —Gary Turner
I remember interviewing Steve by telephone, when I was at Swinburne University, when Steve had first applied for a position with us in Australia. Steve, of course, was in England, and no-one on the panel at Swinburne had actually met him. Read more
I must admit that prior to that telephone conversation the panel was somewhat wary of making a staff appointment based primarily upon a voice on the phone. Needless to say, Steve gave an outstanding telephone interview, and, coupled with his excellent references, we determined to offer him the position within minutes of the interview concluding.
As a postscript to this, it was only after his arrival at Swinburne that Steve shared with us that we had phoned him at some ungodly hour and that he had given the interview dressed in his pyjamas, sitting at home in his somewhat cold lounge room.
While colleagues at Swinburne, I had the pleasure of working with Steve on many projects. Together we successfully supervised the PhD studies of Anil Khushalani and John Fabre. I enjoyed publishing papers with these doctoral students and Steve, drawing upon their doctoral research.
I'm sure that both Anil and John too drew much from Steve's research insights and guidance. Their personal growth, and the learning that both took with them, remain I'm sure, important foundations to their ongoing careers.
I too learned much from Steve - although I had not worked previously in areas related to HCI, collaborating with Steve one could not help but be drawn by his passion for the discipline and learn from his command of the domain.
I find it hard to believe that he has left so early.
My deepest condolences to Anna and Alec. Steve remains in our memories. Cheers Steve. —Ross Smith (Swinburne, Deakin, RMIT)
We will miss Steve's gentle smile and professional manner.—Kang
Steve, what a shock! You always challenged conventional thought and still had so much to give. I'm glad our paths crossed. You have left a big, empty space. My thoughts are with your family. —Helen Kieboom
Certainly a life to celebrate! And a great loss to our research community. Sorry I cannot be there.—Judy Kay
I wish Steve we had had more opportunities to work together, your way of thinking was so different to mine, yet so helpful in sparking new ideas and connections. I will remember fondly the relatively short time we worked together, and know that some of what you taught me will remain with me forever. —Judy
Steve had a gentle and unassuming wisdom in all walks of life that was such a source of confidence and self belief for those around him. I will miss him dearly. My thoughts are with his family and friends to whom he meant so much. —Kenton x
I knew Steve as a researcher in HCI and to an extent, on a personal level. He was passionate researcher in HCI and a warm and engaging person at a personal level. All in all a good soul. He will be missed. Sincere condolences to his family at this difficult time. Kind regards —Professor Rajiv Khosla Director, RECCSI, La Trobe University
Gentle, unassuming and always willing to share and move forward with others. A rare colleague. Rest in peace, Steve. We'll miss you. —Bharat Dave
You were more than an academic supervisor and mentor. You were our academic father. Thank you for educating us, for believing in us, for helping us in the dark moments, for teaching us the value of tenacity and patience, for aiding us in accomplishing our dreams, for always being there for us. We, I, will greatly miss you Steve. Εις το επανιδείν δάσκαλε.. —Kostas
Intelligent, witty, a huge personality, and enormous loss. Cheers Steve, RIP. —Michael Foote
A nice colleague: Steve introduced me to a team working on TeleHealth system and application services, based on Cloud computing architecture, for submission to IBM/Novartis NCD Challenge competition in 2011. —Prof. Rajkumar Buyya
Steve you will be missed. —Alex Gibson
In working with Steve, I think his great skill was to connect people and knowledge in a seamless way. I will always envy the way that he managed these connections and the associated conflicts with the minimum of fuss. He will be profoundly missed as a colleague and a leader. —Peter Scales
such a great loss, we at the VCA will miss him very much... we had such great plans...Steve was one of nature's true gentlemen and a great colleague. my warmest thoughts go to his family and friends. —Su Baker, Director , Victorian College of the Arts
A very special person who was not only academically gifted, but was also one of the kindest and most humble people. He will be sorly missed, but remembered and admired in so many different ways by those of us who had the pleasure of working with him.
I'll miss your friendly face and professional contributions to the CIS department. —Lee
I only met Steve briefly a couple of times (several people recommended that I talk to him) but I was impressed at how kind, humble, and talented he was. I was very much looking forward to work with him on some problems of common interest. He will be missed in more ways than can be described. —P. Van Hentenryck
Steve, your friendship, leadership and mentoring was first class, thank you. May you rest in peace.
As a fellow 'Scouser' who somehow found themselves down here in Oz, I'll miss ya Steve!
Rest in peace. Steve was a treasure and we will treasure his memory. Anna and Alec, so sorry for your loss.