The Non-Constant Gardner

Recent events – the bastardisation of Roald Dahl and the burning of history – reminded me of a post I had planned long ago, on Martin Gardner and school libraries. It is often said that Martin Gardner is responsible for creating more mathematicians than anybody else. As the fable goes, a bright-eyed teenager stumbles upon a collection of Gardner’s mathematical writing in the school library, they read away on weird topologies and the Game of Life and so on, they are entranced and another mathematician is born. The fable is not true, but it is true enough. Continue reading “The Non-Constant Gardner”