Person: Loyd, Samuel
Sam Loyd was an American amateur mathematician best known for his invention of puzzles as well as chess problems.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- While still at school, Loyd won prizes for his chess problems.
- Loyd's first chess problem was published in the New York Saturday Courier on 14 April 1855.
- After leaving school Loyd began to study engineering, intending to become a steam and mechanical engineer, but he found he could make his living from his puzzles and chess problems.
- Loyd's interests were by now rather diverse for as well as earning money as a plumbing contractor he had purchased a chain of music stores.
- He continued to compose chess problems, write newspaper columns, and edit papers such as Sam Loyd's Puzzle Magazine and even a mechanics journal.
- By 1870 Loyd had become more interested in composing mathematical puzzles than chess problems.
- As well as chess problems of the type "White to play and mate in three", Loyd also produced mathematical problems involving chess boards.
- Loyd discussed this in the April 1908 edition of Sam Loyd's Puzzle Magazine.
- Loyd contributed the following problems to the first part of the American Chess Journal.
- These show Loyd's genius very clearly - particularly d) which is an incredible achievement.
- Loyd's most famous puzzle was the 15 Puzzle which he produced in 1878.
- Of course, Loyd knew his $1000 was safe for the puzzle cannot be solved.
- Another of Loyd's famous puzzles was called "Get off the Earth" and was produced many years after the 15 Puzzle.
- We have talked about mathematical puzzles invented by Loyd.
- At first sight one would not expect there to be a unique solution to this problem, but Loyd was well aware that a logical argument would find the one and only one solution.
- Not only did Loyd produce puzzles, he also gave performances of tricks.
- Loyd produced over 10 000 puzzles in his lifetime many involving sophisticated mathematical ideas.
Born 31 January 1841, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , USA. Died 10 April 1911, New York, USA.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Origin Usa, Puzzles And Problems
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive