Martin Gardner
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Martin Gardner  
Born  October 21, 1914 Tulsa, Oklahoma, United States 

Known for  Puzzles, author 
Martin Gardner (born October 21, 1914, Tulsa, Oklahoma) is a popular American mathematics and science writer specializing in recreational mathematics, but with interests encompassing stage magic, pseudoscience, literature (especially the writings of Lewis Carroll), philosophy, scientific skepticism, and religion. He wrote the Mathematical Games column in Scientific American from 1956 to 1981, and he has published over 70 books.
Gardner reportedly coined the term mathemagician.^{[citation needed]}
Contents 
[edit] Biography
Martin Gardner grew up in and around Tulsa, Oklahoma, and he attended college at the University of Chicago, where he earned his bachelor's degree in philosophy. During World War II, he served for several years in the U.S. Navy as a yeoman (the ship's secretary) on board the destroyer escort USS Pope (DE134) in the Atlantic, as Gardner states several times in his writings. His ship was still in the Atlantic when the war came to an end with the surrender of Japan in August 1945.
After the war, Gardner attended college at the University of Chicago again. He also attended graduate school for a year there, but he did not earn an advanced degree. Gardner states this in his own writings.
For many decades, Gardner, his wife Charlotte, and their two sons lived in HastingsonHudson, New York, where he earned his living as an independent author, publishing books with several different publishers, and also publishing hundreds of magazine articles and newspaper articles in various magazines and newspapers. Either by choice or coincidence (given his interest in logic and mathematics), they lived on Euclid Avenue. In 1979, he and his wife semiretired and moved to Hendersonville, North Carolina. His wife died in the year 2000.
In 2002 Gardner returned to Oklahoma, to Norman, Oklahoma, where his son, James Gardner, is a professor of education at the University of Oklahoma.^{[1]}
[edit] Recreational mathematics
Martin Gardner more or less singlehandedly renewed and nurtured interest in recreational mathematics in the North America for a large part of the 20th century. He is best known for his decadeslong efforts in popular mathematics and science journalism, particularly through his "Mathematical Games" column in Scientific American.
The "Mathematical Games" column ran from 1956 to 1981 and introduced many subjects to a wider audience, including:
 Flexagons
 John Horton Conway's Game of Life
 Polyominoes
 The Soma cube
 The board game "Nash", also called "Hex" and sometimes called "John", independently created by Piet Hein and John Forbes Nash
 Tangrams
 Penrose tiling
 Cryptanalysis/public key cryptography/trapdoor ciphers/the RSA129 cryptographic challenge
 The work of M. C. Escher
 Fractals
In 1981, on Gardner's retirement  from the Scientific American, only, the column was replaced by Douglas Hofstadter's "Metamagical Themas", a name that is an anagram of "Mathematical Games". Gardner has never really retired as an author, but rather he continues to do literature research and to write, especially in updating many of his older books, such as Origami, Eleusis, and the Soma Cube, ISBN 9780521735247, published 2008.
Gardner also wrote a "puzzle" story column for (Isaac) Asimov's Science Fiction magazine for a while in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
[edit] Pseudoscience
Gardner's uncompromising attitude toward pseudoscience has made him one of the world's foremost antipseudoscience polemicists of the last half of the twentieth century. His book Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science (1952, revised 1957) is a classic and seminal work of the skeptical movement. It explored a myriad of dubious outlooks and projects including Fletcherism, creationism, organic farming, Charles Fort, Rudolf Steiner, Scientology, Dianetics, unidentified flying objects, dowsing, extrasensory perception, the Bates method, and psychokinesis. This book and his subsequent efforts (Science: Good, Bad and Bogus, 1981; Order and Surprise, 1983, etc) earned him a wealth of detractors and antagonists in the field of "fringe science" with many of whom he kept up running dialogs (both public and private) for decades.
In 1976, Gardner was a founding member of the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP), and he wrote a column called "Notes of a Fringe Watcher" (originally "Notes of a PsiWatcher") from 1983 to 2002 for that organization's periodical Skeptical Inquirer. These have been collected in five books: New Age: Notes of a Fringe Watcher (1988), On the Wild Side (1992), Weird Water and Fuzzy Logic (1996), Did Adam and Eve Have Navels (2000), and Are Universes Thicker than Blackberries (2003). Unusually for a senior CSICOP fellow and prominent skeptic of the paranormal, Gardner is a theist and professes belief in God, although he is critical of organized religion. Gardner has been quoted as saying that he regards parapsychology and other research into the paranormal as tantamount to "tempting God" and seeking "signs and wonders". He has, however, said that he feels it might be possible that prayers may be genuinely answered. They may minutely affect mathematical probabilities.
In 2001, Gardner sent James Randi, another challenger of pseudoscience, the key to an old theorem asserted in 1960 by Hugo Steinhaus: the oneseventh area triangle found in an arbitrary triangle.
[edit] Religious and philosophical interests
Gardner has had an abiding fascination in religious belief. He has written repeatedly about what public figures such as Robert Maynard Hutchins, Mortimer Adler, and William F. Buckley, Jr. believed and whether their beliefs were logically consistent. In some cases, he has attacked prominent religious figures such as Mary Baker Eddy on the grounds that their claims are unsupportable. His semiautobiographical novel The Flight of Peter Fromm depicts a traditionally Protestant Christian man struggling with his faith, examining 20th century scholarship and intellectual movements and ultimately rejecting Christianity while remaining a theist. He describes his own belief as philosophical theism inspired by the theology of the philosopher Miguel de Unamuno. While critical of organized religions, Gardner believes in God, claiming that this belief cannot be confirmed or disconfirmed by reason. At the same time, he is skeptical of claims that God has communicated with human beings through spoken or telepathic revelation or through miracles in the natural world.
Gardner's philosophy may be summarized as follows: There is nothing supernatural, and nothing in human reason or visible in the world to compel people to believe in God. The mystery of existence is enchanting, but a belief in "The Old One" comes from faith without evidence. However, with faith and prayer people can find greater happiness than without. If there is an afterlife, the loving "Old One" is probably real. "[To an atheist] the universe is the most exquisite masterpiece ever constructed by nobody", from G. K. Chesterton, is one of Gardner's favorite quotes.
Gardner has said that he suspects that the fundamental nature of human consciousness may not be knowable or discoverable, unless perhaps a physics more profound than ("underlying") quantum mechanics is some day developed. In this regard, he says, he is an adherent of the "New Mysterianism".
[edit] Literary criticism and fiction
Gardner is considered an authority on Lewis Carroll; his annotated editions of Carroll's works were reissued in 1999 as The Annotated Alice. His viewpoint has recently come under some criticism from the proponents of the "Carroll Myth"; Gardner has hit back very aggressively against the most famous of these  Karoline Leach  in a recent issue of Knight Letter, the journal of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America.
In addition to his Carroll books, Gardner has produced “Annotated” editions of Chesterton’s The Innocence Of Father Brown and The Man Who Was Thursday as well as of celebrated poems including The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Casey at the Bat and The Night Before Christmas.
Gardner has occasionally tried his hand at fiction of a kind always closely associated with his nonfictional preoccupations (e.g., Visitors from Oz, based on L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, and stories about an imaginary numerologist named Dr. Matrix). His short stories are collected in The NoSided Professor and Other Tales of Fantasy, Humor, Mystery, and Philosophy (1987).
He is a member of the allmale literary banqueting club the Trap Door Spiders, which served as the basis of Isaac Asimov's fictional group of mystery solvers the Black Widowers.
[edit] Controversy
In addition to his expository writing about mathematics, Gardner has been an avid controversialist on contemporary issues, arguing for his points of view in a wide range of fields, from general semantics to fuzzy logic to watching TV (he once wrote a negative review of Jerry Mander's book Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television). Though particularly well known for his critique of pseudoscientific beliefs, Gardner has also taken sides on political, economic, historical and philosophical controversies.^{[citation needed]} His philosophical views, for example, are described and defended in his book The Whys of a Philosophical Scrivener.
Gardner is well known for his sometimes controversial philosophy of mathematics. He wrote negative reviews of The Mathematical Experience by Philip J. Davis and Reuben Hersh and What is mathematics, really? by Hersh, both of which were critical of aspects of mathematical Platonism, and the first of which was wellreceived by the mathematical community. While Gardner is often perceived as a hardcore Platonist, his reviews demonstrate some formalist tendencies. Gardner maintains that his views are widespread among mathematicians, but Hersh has countered that in his experience as a professional mathematician and speaker, this is not the case. [1]
[edit] Works
[edit] Books by Martin Gardner
 1956 Mathematics, Magic and Mystery Dover; ISBN 0486203352
 1957 Science Puzzlers The Viking Press, Scholastic Book Services
 1957 Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science Dover; ISBN 0486203948
 1957 Great Essays in Science (editor); Prometheus Books (Reprint edition 1994) ISBN 0879758538
 1957 The Wizard of Oz and Who He Was. (with Russel B. Nye) Michigan State University Press. Revised 1994.
 1958 Logic Machines and Diagrams. McGrawHill New York
 1960 The Annotated Alice New York: Bramhall House Clarkson Potter. Lib of Congress #607341 (no ISBN)
 1962 The Annotated Snark New York: Simon & Schuster. (Unabridged Hunting of the snark with introduction and extensive notes from Gardner). 1998 reprint, Penguin Classics; ISBN 0140434917
 1962 Relativity for the Million New York: MacMillan Company (o.p.). Revised and updated 1976 as The Relativity Explosion New York: Vintage Books. Revised and enlarged 1996 as Relativity Simply Explained New York: Dover; ISBN 0486293157
 1964 The Ambidextrous Universe: Mirror Asymmetry and TimeReversed Worlds (updated 1990, to be rereleased with updates June 9, 2005 as The New Ambidextrous Universe: Symmetry and Asymmetry from Mirror Reflections to Superstrings: Revised Edition, Dover; ISBN 0486442446)
 1965 The Annotated Ancient Mariner New York: Clarkson Potter, Reprint. Prometheus. ISBN 1591021251
 1967 Annotated Casey at the Bat: A Collection of Ballads about the Mighty Casey New York: Clarkson Potter. Reprint. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1984. ISBN 0226282635 Reprint. New York: Dover, 1995. ISBN 0486285987
 1973 The Flight of Peter Fromm, Los Altos, California: William Kaufmann, Inc. Prometheus Books; Reprint edition (1994) ISBN 0879759119
 1975 Mathematical Carnival: A New Roundup of Tantalizers and Puzzles from "Scientific American", Knopf Publishing Group; ISBN 0394494067
 1976 The Incredible Dr. Matrix, New York, Charles Scribner's Sons; ISBN 068414669X
 1978 Aha! Insight, W.H. Freeman & Company; ISBN 071671017X
 1981 Science: Good, Bad, and Bogus, Prometheus Books; ISBN 0879755733 (paperback), ISBN 0879751444 (hardback), ISBN 0380617544 (Avon pocket paperback)
 1981 Entertaining Science Experiments With Everyday Objects; Dover; ISBN 0486242013
 1982 Aha! Gotcha: Paradoxes to Puzzle and Delight (Tools for Transformation); W.H. Freeman & Company; ISBN 0716713616
 1983 The Whys of a Philosophical Scrivener, 1999 reprint St. Martin's Griffin; ISBN 0312206828
 1983 Order and Surprise, Prometheus Books, ISBN 087975219X
 1984 Codes, Ciphers and Secret Writing (Test Your Code Breaking Skills), Dover; ISBN 0486247619
 1985 Magic Numbers of Dr Matrix, Prometheus Books; ISBN 0879752823
 1986 Entertaining Mathematical Puzzles, Dover; ISBN 0486252116
 1987 The NoSided Professor and other tales of fantasy, humor, mystery, and philosophy, Prometheus Books; ISBN 0879753900
 1987 The Annotated Innocence of Father Brown Oxford University Press, ISBN 0192177486 (Notes by Gardner, on G. K. Chesterton’s stories).
 1987 Riddles of the Sphinx Mathematical Association of American, ISBN 0883856328 (collection of articles from Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine)
 1987 Time Travel and Other Mathematical Bewilderments, W.H. Freeman & Company; ISBN 0716719258
 1988 Perplexing Puzzles and Tantalizing Teasers, Dover; ISBN 0486256375
 1988 New Age: Notes of a Fringe Watcher, Prometheus Books; ISBN 087975432X (collection of "Notes of a Fringe Watcher" columns)
 1990 More Annotated Alice, Random House; ISBN 0394585712 (a "supplement" to The Annotated Alice)
 1991 The Unexpected Hanging and Other Mathematical Diversions, University Of Chicago Press; Reprint edition; ISBN 0226282562
 1991 The Annotated Night Before Christmas: A Collection Of Sequels, Parodies, And Imitations Of Clement Moore's Immortal Ballad About Santa Claus Edited, with an introduction and notes, by Martin Gardner, Summit Books (Reprinted, Prometheus Books, 1995); ISBN 0671708392
 1991 Fractal Music, Hypercards and More; W. H. Freeman
 1992 On the Wild Side, Prometheus Books; ISBN 0879757132 (collection of "Notes of a Fringe Watcher" columns)
 1993 The Healing Revelations of Mary Baker Eddy, Prometheus Books,
 1994 My Best Mathematical and Logic Puzzles, Dover; ISBN 0486281523
 1995 Classic Brainteasers, Sterling Publishing; ISBN 0806912618
 1995 Urantia: The Great Cult Mystery, Prometheus Books; ISBN 0879759550
 1996 Weird Water & Fuzzy Logic: More Notes of a Fringe Watcher, Prometheus Books; ISBN 1573920967 (collection of "Notes of a Fringe Watcher" columns)
 1997 The Night Is Large : Collected Essays, 19381995, St. Martin's Griffin; ISBN 0312169493
 1998 Calculus Made Easy, St. Martin's Press; Revised edition ISBN 0312185480 (Revisions and additions to the 1910 calculus textbook by Silvanus P. Thompson.)
 1998 Martin Gardner's Table Magic, Dover; ISBN 048640403X
 1998 Mathematical Recreations: A Collection in Honor of Martin Gardner, Dover; ISBN 0486400891  This book, edited by David A. Klamer, was the tribute of the mathematical community to Gardner when he retired from writing his Scientific American column in 1981. (The Dover edition is a reprint of the original, titled The Mathematical Gardner, published by Wadsworth.) Discreetly assembled for the occasion, the stature of the mathematicians submitting papers is a testament to Gardner's importance.
 1999 Gardner's Whys & Wherefores Prometheus Books; ISBN 1573927449
 1999 The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition ; W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN 0393048470
 1999 The Annotated Thursday: G. K. Chesterton's Masterpiece, the Man Who Was Thursday by G. K. Chesterton, Edited by Martin Gardner.
 2000 From the Wandering Jew to William F. Buckley, Jr. : On Science, Literature, and Religion, Prometheus Books; ISBN 1573928526
 2000 The Annotated Wizard of Oz, New York: W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN 0393049922 (introduction)
 2001 A Gardner's Workout: Training the Mind and Entertaining the Spirit ISBN 1568811209
 2001 Mathematical Puzzle Tales; Mathematical Association of America ISBN 088385533X (collection of articles from Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine)
 2001 Did Adam and Eve Have Navels?: Debunking Pseudoscience, W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN 0393322386 (collection of "Notes of a Fringe Watcher" columns)
 2002 Martin Gardner's Favorite Poetic Parodies Prometheus Books; ISBN 1573929255
 2003 Are Universes Thicker Than Blackberries?: Discourses on Gödel, Magic Hexagrams, Little Red Riding Hood, and Other Mathematical and Pseudoscientific Topics, ISBN 0393057429 (collection of "Notes of a Fringe Watcher" columns and others)
 2004 Smart Science Tricks, Sterling; ISBN 1402709102
 2007 The Jinn from Hyperspace: And Other Scribblingsboth Serious and Whimsical, Prometheus Books; ISBN 1591025656
 2008 Bamboozlers: The Book of Bankable Bar Betchas, Brain Bogglers, Belly Busters & Bewitchery by Diamond Jim Tyler, Diamond Jim Productions; ISBN 0967601819 (introduction)
 (For a downloadable version of The Mathemagician and the Pied Puzzler, another tribute book, see external links below)
Note: Gardner has a number of books on magic written "for the trade", which are not listed here.
[edit] Collections of Scientific American columns
Fifteen books together encompass Martin Gardner's columns from Scientific American:
 Hexaflexagons and Other Mathematical Diversions: The First Scientific American Book of Puzzles and Games 1959; University of Chicago Press 1988 ISBN 0226282546 (originally published as The Scientific American Book of Mathematical Puzzles and Diversions)
 The Second Scientific American Book of Mathematical Puzzles and Diversions 1961; University of Chicago Press 1987; ISBN 0226282538
 Martin Gardner's New Mathematical Diversions from Scientific American 1966; Simon and Schuster; reprinted by Mathematical Association of America 1995
 Numerology of Dr. Matrix 1967; reprinted/expanded as The Magic Numbers of Dr. Matrix; Prometheus Books; ISBN 0879752815 / ISBN 0879752823
 Unexpected Hangings, and Other Mathematical Diversions Simon & Schuster 1968; reprinted by University of Chicago Press, 1991 ISBN 0671200739
 The Sixth Scientific American Book of Mathematical Puzzles and Diversions Simon & Schuster 1971
 Mathematical Carnival Vintage 1975; reprinted by Mathematical Association of America
 Mathematical Magic Show Vintage 1977; reprinted by Mathematical Association of America
 Mathematical Circus Vintage 1979; reprinted by Mathematical Association of America
 Wheels, Life, and Other Mathematical Amusements 1983; W. H. Freeman & Co. ISBN 0716715899
 Knotted Doughnuts and Other Mathematical Entertainments 1986; W. H. Freeman & Co. ISBN 0716717999
 Time Travel and Other Mathematical Bewilderments 1988; W. H. Freeman & Co. ISBN 0716719258
 Penrose Tiles to Trapdoor Ciphers 1989; W. H. Freeman & Co. ISBN 0716719878; reprinted by Mathematical Association of America
 Fractal Music, Hypercards and More 1991; W. H. Freeman
 Last Recreations: Hydras, Eggs, and other Mathematical Mystifications 1997; Springer Verlag; ISBN 0387949291
Three other books collect some or all of Martin Gardner's columns from Scientific American:
 The Colossal Book of Mathematics: Classic Puzzles, Paradoxes, and Problems 2001; W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN 0393020231 (a "best of" collection)
 Martin Gardner's Mathematical Games 2005; Mathematical Association of America; ISBN 0883855453 (CDROM of all fifteen books above, encompassing all articles in the column)
 The Colossal Book of Short Puzzles and Problems 2006; W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN 0393061140
[edit] See also
[edit] References
 ^ Interview with Martin Gardner, Notices of the American Mathematical Society, Vol. 52, No. 6, June/July 2005, pp. 602611
[edit] External links
 1998 interview with Gardner by Kendrick Frazier for the Skeptical Inquirer
 2004 interview with Gardner (PDF) by Allyn Jackson for the AMS Notices
 The Martin Gardner Interview (2005)  Cambridge University Press blog  Part 1
 The Martin Gardner Interview (2005)  Cambridge University Press blog  Part 2
 The Martin Gardner Interview (2005)  Cambridge University Press blog  Part 3
 The Martin Gardner Interview (2005)  Cambridge University Press blog  Part 4
 The Martin Gardner Interview (2005)  Cambridge University Press blog  Part 5
 2006 interview with Gardner by Colm Mulcahy for the MAA Online website
 James Randi's notes on Gardner, written in the 1960s
 A short Martin Gardner Bio
 About Gathering for Gardner
 (2587) Gardner asteroid
 Online Gardner bibliography
 Gardner, Martin. "David Bohm and J. Krishnamurti", Skeptical Inquirer, July 2000.
 Gathering for Gardner conference site, includes downloadable Gardner tribute ebook

Persondata  

NAME  Gardner, Martin 
ALTERNATIVE NAMES  
SHORT DESCRIPTION  American recreational mathematician, magician, skeptic, and magazine columnist 
DATE OF BIRTH  October 21, 1914 
PLACE OF BIRTH  Tulsa, Oklahoma 
DATE OF DEATH  
PLACE OF DEATH 