G4G9 – The Gathering for Gardner

Just got back from the Gathering for Gardner in Atlanta, a recreational math conference that is held every other year in honor of the now 95-year old Martin Gardner. Gardner was the writer of the Mathematical Games column in Scientific American for over 25 years, and he’s the author of over 70 books on math and puzzles. Although Gardner himself no longer travels to the gathering, it is no exaggeration to say that G4G continues to attract the word’s foremost mathematicians, puzzlers, scientists, origami folders, artists and philosophers. Here is a small sampling of the people who attended this year – Stephen Wolfram, puzzle master Will Shortz, John Horton Conway and many others:

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During the day there were presentations by the attendees, and at night there were magic and variety shows. My toy inventor friend Mark Setteducati is one of the main organizers, together with Tom Rodgers and Elwyn Berlekamp. For many years now, they have had me host the parlor magic show and the main stage show. This year we had two lovely Chinese magicians on the bill: Ruxian and Wang Lu. We traded magic secrets at a party at Tom Rodgers’ beautiful Japanese-style home outside of Atlanta.

Here are some pictures from G4G9 (click to enlarge):

G4G9 Logo  Ruxian Linking Rings  G4G9 Purple Scarves

G4G9 Cards  G4G9 Performers
L to R: Logo by Scott Kim; Ruxian does the Chinese Linking Rings; magic with silk scarves; card manipulations; post-show with Ruxian and Wang Lu, mathematician John Horton Conway and his son Gareth, Swedish magician Lennart Green, and G4G organizer Mark Setteducati.
[Photos by Wei Zhang and Peter Rasmussen]

It should be noted, by the way, that 8-year old Gareth Conway (pictured above) can recite the first 130 digits of pi in 40 seconds.

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