My Best Mathematical and Logic Puzzles

Courier Corporation
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Over a period of 25 years as author of the Mathematical Games column for Scientific American, Martin Gardner devoted a column every six months or so to short math problems or puzzles. He was especially careful to present new and unfamiliar puzzles that had not been included in such classic collections as those by Sam Loyd and Henry Dudeney. Later, these puzzles were published in book collections, incorporating reader feedback on alternate solutions or interesting generalizations.
The present volume contains a rich selection of 70 of the best of these brain teasers, in some cases including references to new developments related to the puzzle. Now enthusiasts can challenge their solving skills and rattle their egos with such stimulating mind-benders as The Returning Explorer, The Mutilated Chessboard, Scrambled Box Tops, The Fork in the Road, Bronx vs. Brooklyn, Touching Cigarettes, and 64 other problems involving logic and basic math. Solutions are included.

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About the author

Martin Gardner was a renowned author who published over 70 books on subjects from science and math to poetry and religion. He also had a lifelong passion for magic tricks and puzzles. Well known for his mathematical games column in Scientific American and his "Trick of the Month" in Physics Teacher magazine, Gardner attracted a loyal following with his intelligence, wit, and imagination.

Martin Gardner: A Remembrance
The worldwide mathematical community was saddened by the death of Martin Gardner on May 22, 2010. Martin was 95 years old when he died, and had written 70 or 80 books during his long lifetime as an author. Martin's first Dover books were published in 1956 and 1957: Mathematics, Magic and Mystery, one of the first popular books on the intellectual excitement of mathematics to reach a wide audience, and Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science, certainly one of the first popular books to cast a devastatingly skeptical eye on the claims of pseudoscience and the many guises in which the modern world has given rise to it. Both of these pioneering books are still in print with Dover today along with more than a dozen other titles of Martin's books. They run the gamut from his elementary Codes, Ciphers and Secret Writing, which has been enjoyed by generations of younger readers since the 1980s, to the more demanding The New Ambidextrous Universe: Symmetry and Asymmetry from Mirror Reflections to Superstrings, which Dover published in its final revised form in 2005.

To those of us who have been associated with Dover for a long time, however, Martin was more than an author, albeit a remarkably popular and successful one. As a member of the small group of long-time advisors and consultants, which included NYU's Morris Kline in mathematics, Harvard's I. Bernard Cohen in the history of science, and MIT's J. P. Den Hartog in engineering, Martin's advice and editorial suggestions in the formative 1950s helped to define the Dover publishing program and give it the point of view which — despite many changes, new directions, and the consequences of evolution — continues to be operative today.

In the Author's Own Words:

"Politicians, real-estate agents, used-car salesmen, and advertising copy-writers are expected to stretch facts in self-serving directions, but scientists who falsify their results are regarded by their peers as committing an inexcusable crime. Yet the sad fact is that the history of science swarms with cases of outright fakery and instances of scientists who unconsciously distorted their work by seeing it through lenses of passionately held beliefs."

"A surprising proportion of mathematicians are accomplished musicians. Is it because music and mathematics share patterns that are beautiful?" — Martin Gardner

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Additional Information

Courier Corporation
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Published on
Apr 10, 2013
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Games & Activities / Puzzles
Mathematics / Recreations & Games
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This content is DRM protected.
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Henry Ernest Dudeney (1857–1930) was an English author and mathematician who specialised in logic puzzles and mathematical games. He is known as one of the country's foremost creators of puzzles. The Canterbury Puzzles and Other Curious Problems is a 1907 mathematical puzzle book by Henry Dudeney. The first part of the book features a series of puzzles based on the characters from The Canterbury Tales by Geoffery Chaucer. The ebook contains illustrations, explanations and answers to each puzzle and is still actual in testing your mathematical skills and your capacity of problem solving. HISTORICAL PRESS OPINIONS ON "THE CANTERBURY PUZZLES": "It is a book of remarkable ingenuity and interest."—Educational Times. "The most ingenious brain in England ... a fascinating new book."—Evening News. "A capital book of posers."—Daily News. "The Puzzles ... reach the limit of ingenuity and intricacy; and it is well for the sanity of his readers that the author gives a list of solutions at the end of the book."—Observer. "A book that will provide much entertainment for Christmas gatherings ... ingenious puzzles and problems invented by 'Sphinx,' the Puzzle King."—The Captain. "Mr. Dudeney, whose reputation is world-wide as the puzzle and problem maker of the age ... sure to find a wide circulation ... as attractive in appearance as its contents are fascinating."—English Mechanic and World of Science. "An exceedingly ingenious constructor and solver of fascinating puzzles, mathematical and otherwise."—School Guardian. "A book which ought to be highly popular ... it is all mighty ingenious, and very intelligently put before the reader."—Sheffield Telegraph. "It is matter for delight that Mr. Henry E. Dudeney has collected into a volume those mysterious puzzles of his which have appeared in many journals ... contains quite a number of ingenious new mental problems ... a valuable introduction."—The Lady. "For the long winter evenings Mr. Dudeney's book of puzzledom is to be recommended. Mr. Dudeney has made a study of every kind of puzzle there is ... he supplies you with every kind of brain-twister."—The Daily Chronicle. "Took up more of the reviewer's time than he could well afford to give it; he wanted to solve some of the curious problems that it contains, and for ingenious persons who want employment on a wet day, he promises from it abundant scope."—Yorkshire Post. "A well-known master puzzler ... provides an abundance of seasonable occupation for the ingenious, with an introduction on the general question of puzzles, which is one of the most interesting parts of the book. He is a skilful inventor."—Nottingham Guardian. "Will enjoy the entertainment provided ... ingenious and witty."—The Guardian. "Extremely ingenious book, which abounds in problems that will keep the reader busy for hours—until in despair he turns to the answers at the end."—Manchester Guardian. "The setting of these perplexities is novel ... a dramatic background being thus provided which prevents too great aridity.... The book should be much in request."—The Morning Leader.
In this entertaining and challenging new collection of logic puzzles, Raymond Smullyan—author of What Is the Name of This Book? And The Lady or the Tiger?—continues to delight and astonish us with his gift for making available, in the thoroughly pleasurable form of puzzles, some of the most important mathematical thinking of our time.

In the first part of the book, he transports us once again to that wonderful realm where knights, knaves, twin sisters, quadruplet brothers, gods, demons, and mortals either always tell the truth or always lie, and where truth-seekers are set a variety of fascinating problems. The section culminates in an enchanting and profound metapuzzle (a puzzle about a puzzle), in which Inspector Craig of Scotland Yard gets involved in a search of the Fountain of Youth on the Island of Knights and Knaves.

In the second and larger section, we accompany the Inspector on a summer-long adventure into the field of combinatory logic (a branch of logic that plays an important role in computer science and artificial intelligence). His adventure, which includes enchanted forests, talking birds, bird sociologists, and a classic quest, provides for us along the way the pleasure of solving puzzles of increasing complexity until we reach the Master Forest and—thanks to Gödel’s famous theorem—the final revelation.
To Mock a Mockingbird will delight all puzzle lovers—the curious neophytes as well as the serious students of logic, mathematics, or computer science.
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