Calling All Mike Mudge Fans

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Those who grew up in the 80s reading the British computer magazine Personal Computer World might recall a certain regular column titled Numbers Count, by Mike Mudge. It was my favorite part of the magazine, a very accessible Computational Number Theory puzzles column, the place where I first learned about integer partitions, perfect numbers, Smarandache functions and a host of other perplexing and entertaing notions from the Queen of mathematics. I have extremely fond memories of it. His articles created a permanent place in my heart for the theory of numbers, and 20 years later I am finding a nostalgic yearning for those sort of things.

Sadly my PCW collection is gathering mildew in an inaccessible basement a couple of oceans away, and libraries in USA do not carry the magazine. In fact I am yet to run into an American who knows what I am talking about. Information on Mike Mudge, what became of him, whether he is still alive or not, and whether he wrote anything else besides those columns, is difficult to come by. There are about half a dozen references to an article or two that he wrote besides the Numbers Count column, but that's about it.

I am really interested in seeing a separately bound collection of his Numbers Count columns, along the lines of Martin Gardner's compendiums of his Scientific American columns. If he is still alive, I would love to do an interview or exchange emails and letters. Failing all that I would like to see the columns scanned and collected on the internet, together with a biography and bibliography site. I am sure there are other fans out there who would be interested in this project.

So, if anyone has any information about Mike Mudge, his whereabouts, his contact info., his biography and bibliography, anything at all, please contact me. I am also interested in obtaining old copies of Personal Computer World (from before they went "modern,") either full volumes, or just the Numbers Count columns.

4 comments:

ColmOCi said...

Fellow Mike Mudge fan .

njmalhq said...

Excellent! Welcome to my humble abode.

mathmo said...

Please add me to the list of Mike Mudge fans! I have a hand-written letter from Mike, dated Friday 1/10/93. He was then living in Dyfed, Wales. He also attached a business card to his letter, so I have his full postal address, his telephone number from that time and a pretty comprehensive list of his post-nominal qualifications! Best regards,Mathew Davies.

dcw803 said...

I'm also a Mike Mudge fan, I read all those Numbers Count columns with great enthusiasm, and credit quite a lot of my programming skills to all the time spent crafting programs to solve Numbers Count problems.. A great start! Duncan White.