Martin Gardner (October 21, 1914 – May 22, 2010) was an American popular mathematics and science writer who wrote about math puzzles and intellectual recreations in Scientific American for a quarter-century.  He published almost 100 books on topics as diverse as magic, recreational mathematics, philosophy and the nuances of Alice in Wonderland.  He was a leading voice in refuting pseudoscientific theories and so-called paranormal powers, from ESP to flying saucers to spoon-benders.  Gardner’s was a clarifying intelligence: his talent was asking good questions and transmitting the answers clearly and crisply.  He conveyed “the magical quality of mathematics,” according to Douglas Hofstadter, the cognitive scientist. As ace statistician and card magician Persi Diaconis has remarked, Gardner "turned thousands of children into mathematicians, and thousands of mathematicians into children.

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Article on Flexagons by Martin Gardner:

Hexaflexagons and Other Mathematical Diversions: The first Scientific American Book of Mathematical Puzzles and Games (December 1956)

 

 

 

 


Other articles by Martin Gardner featured on MAA's site (Mathematical Association of America):

Eight Problems (February 1960)

 

 

 


The Game of Life (October 1970)

 

 

 


Mandlebrot's Fractals (December 1976)

Penrose Tiling I & II (January 1977)

Trapdoor Ciphers (August 1977)

The Wonders of a Plainverse (July 1980)