Jon Driver died suddenly on 28th November 2011. Jon was a wonderful individual; a loving son, husband, father and brother; and an irreplaceable friend and colleague.

This is a place for everyone who knew Jon to share our memories of him and through this to help celebrate his life.

If you would like to add a description of your memories of Jon to this blog please contact with the text you would like posted. We welcome any contribution, from short snippets to longer pieces. Please bear in mind this is a place to remember Jon and to help celebrate his life.

As well as this blog, there is also a photograph album to which friends and colleagues are most welcome to contribute. If you would like to add one or more pictures please email it/them to

2 December 2011

from Kate Plaisted Grant

I did not know Jon personally, but welcome this opportunity to reflect on some encounters with him. I met John and Nilli in Cambridge about 20 years ago, when Jon was a Lecturer in the Department and Nilli was a Research Fellow. They were a formidable and inspirational couple, both making ground-breaking, seminal contributions to the field of attention at the time. I began some very basic attentional work in humans at the end of my PhD in an attempt to generalise some of my findings in an animal model of visual search. Both Nilli and Jon were keen to give me advice, even though neither would benefit from their intellectual contribution. Jon kindly listened to some ideas later (at a meeting in Birkbeck) when I started to consider visual search ability in children with autism. It was clear at that meeting that he was way ahead of me, but nonetheless let me believe that the insights he brought to the ideas were jointly made. I am proud that the meeting resulted in publishing a paper with him. My last encounter with him was at a talk I gave at the ICN a couple of years ago. I am very encouraged by Jon Simons' reflection that his critical toughness was motivated by his belief that potential could be encouraged by hard challenge. He gave me short shrift over a point I made in my talk, and later, licking my wounds, I reflected that he had indeed identified a weakness in my argument that I subsequently went on to correct. But perhaps he would not have commented at all if he not believed the work overall had some merit. The academic world has suffered a terrible loss. My heart goes out to Nilli, his children, family and personal friends.