Mark Overmars

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Mark Overmars
Born (1958-09-29) 29 September 1958 (age 65)
Alma materUtrecht University
Known forProbabilistic Roadmap Method, GameMaker
Scientific career
FieldsComputational geometry
InstitutionsUtrecht University
Thesis The Design of Dynamic Data Structures  (1983)
Doctoral advisorJan van Leeuwen
Doctoral studentsMarc van Kreveld

Markus Hendrik Overmars (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈmɑrkʏs ˈɦɛndrɪk ˈmɑr(ə)k ˈoːvərˌmɑrs]; born 29 September 1958 in Zeist, Netherlands)[1] is a Dutch computer scientist and teacher of game programming known for his game development application GameMaker. GameMaker lets people create computer games using a drag-and-drop interface. He is the former head of the Center for Geometry, Imaging, and Virtual Environments at Utrecht University, in the Netherlands.[2] This research center concentrates on computational geometry and its application in areas like computer graphics, robotics, geographic information systems, imaging, multimedia, virtual environments, and games.

Overmars received his Ph.D. in 1983 from Utrecht University under the supervision of Jan van Leeuwen,[3] and continued to be a member of the faculty of the same university until September 2013. Overmars has published over 100 journal papers, largely on computational geometry, and is the co-author of several books including a widely used computational geometry text.

Overmars has also worked in robotics. He was the first to develop the probabilistic roadmap method in 1992, which was later independently discovered by Kavraki and Latombe in 1994. Their joint paper, Probabilistic roadmaps for path planning in high-dimensional configuration spaces,[4] is considered one of the most influential studies in motion planning,[5] and has been widely cited (more than 2500 times as of 2014 according to Google Scholar).[6]

In 2011, Overmars and game designer Jochem Schut developed a snake video game called Super Snake HD as a mobile app; it was published by YoYo Games.[7][8][9][10]

Overmars founded and was CTO of Tingly Games from 2012 until it was acquired by CoolGames in 2016.[11] Tingly focused on HTML5 games and e-cards / casual games, the latter of which is called "greeting games".[12]

He founded Quarterfall[13] in June 2020 together with Arjan Egges. Quarterfall is a teaching product that helps teachers use formative assessment to improve the learning processes their students, compared to just assessing their performance.

He is also the original author of the XForms toolkit.


  • Overmars, M. H. (1983). The Design of Dynamic Data Structures. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Vol. 156. Springer-Verlag. ISBN 0-387-12330-X.[14]
  • de Berg, M.; van Kreveld, M.; Overmars, M. H.; Schwarzkopf, O. (1997). Computational Geometry: Algorithms and Applications. Springer-Verlag. 2nd ed., 2000; 3rd ed., 2008.[15][16]
  • Habgood, J.; Overmars, M. H. (2006). The Game Maker's Apprentice: Game Development for Beginners. APress. ISBN 1-59059-615-3.


  1. ^ Curriculum vitae, archived from the Utrecht University web site on October 2, 2011.
  2. ^ Former colleagues, GIVE Center, retrieved 2014-01-16.
  3. ^ Markus (Mark) Hendrik Overmars at the Mathematics Genealogy Project.
  4. ^ Kavraki, L.E.; Svestka, P.; Latombe, J.C.; Overmars, M.H. (1996). "Probabilistic roadmaps for path planning in high-dimensional configuration spaces". IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation. 12 (4): 566–580. doi:10.1109/70.508439. hdl:1874/17328.
  5. ^ Karaman, Sertac; Frazzoli, Emilio (2011), "Sampling-based algorithms for optimal motion planning", International Journal of Robotics Research, 30 (7): 846–894, arXiv:1105.1186, doi:10.1177/0278364911406761, S2CID 14876957, Arguably, the most influential sampling-based motion planning algorithms to date include probabilistic roadmaps
  6. ^ Citations to probabilistic roadmaps, Google Scholar, retrieved 2014-01-17.
  7. ^ Hamel, Ernst-Jan (4 July 2011). "Hoogleraar maakt game voor iPhone, iPad en Android". Retrieved 30 October 2018. Super Snake HD, made with Game Maker, has been out for iPhone, iPod and iPad since mid-June and for Android devices
  8. ^ Bartelson, Eric (17 June 2011). "[Uit Nu!] De eerste commerciële game van Mark Overmars: Super Snake HD". Retrieved 5 November 2018.
  9. ^ scottishgames (23 June 2011). "Out Now – Super Snake HD From YoYo Games". Archived from the original on 27 August 2013. Retrieved 5 November 2018.
  10. ^ App stores for Super Snake HD:
  11. ^ "BoosterMedia becomes CoolGames and joins forces with Tingly Games". 4 February 2020.
  12. ^ "Exclusive Interview With The Creator Of GameMaker -". 6 March 2015. Retrieved 13 November 2018.
  13. ^ "Smart Learning for Higher ICT Education". 4 January 2020.
  14. ^ Review of The design of dynamic data structures by D. T. Lee (1985), MR0710832.
  15. ^ Review of Computational Geometry by Hans-Dietrich Hecker (1998), MR1470713. For the 2nd and 3rd eds., see MR1763734 and MR2723879.
  16. ^ Masum, Hassan (December 2000), "Review of Computational Geometry: Algorithms and Applications (2nd ed.) by Mark De Berg, Marc Van Kreveld, Mark Overmars, and Otfried Schwarzkopf", SIGACT News, 31 (4), New York, NY, USA: ACM: 10–12, doi:10.1145/369836.571192, S2CID 26715500.