New York: Rajeev Motwani, a Stanford University professor who advised Google Inc. founders in their college days, died at his home in Palo Alto, California, on Friday.
Midas touch: Rajeev Motwani.
His body was found in the swimming pool at his backyard, said Dan Stober, director of media relations at Stanford University, in a telephone interview. The cause of death is still unclear at the moment, Stober said. Motwani, best known for mentoring Sergey Brin and Larry Page who later established the search engine giant Google in Mountain View, California, advised a number of companies, including PayPal Inc.
“His legacy and personality live on in the students, projects and companies he has touched,” Brin wrote on his Web blog. “Today, whenever you use a piece of technology, there is a good chance a little bit of Rajeev Motwani is behind it.” Motwani, who was born in New Delhi in 1962, obtained his bachelor’s degree in computer science from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, in 1983 and got his doctorate from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1988.
Motwani founded Mining Data at Stanford, or MIDAS, a group that helped develop data-management concepts. His research covered databases, mining and privacy, according to his homepage. Awards include the Godel Prize, the Okawa Foundation Research Award and the Arthur Sloan Research Fellowship.