Ambigrams are a form of visual wordplay in which words are written such that they can be read in more than one way. I have been creating ambigrams and other such oddities for a while now… and they are collected here for your enjoyment.
Ambigrams & Other Visual Wordplay
An article titled “Words as Art and Play” about my ambigram work (with a couple of examples) made it to the New Educator, a publication of the College of Education at Michigan State University. Actually I made it to the New Educator twice! Here is the other article (Out of this world) this time on my research work (my real job!).August 2003:
A space ambigram I created was featured in Archimedes, a magazine for puzzles and recreational mathematics (Check out http://www.archimedes-lab.org/).My work was also covered in an article in an Indian magazine (Kohinoor publications). There is no web link available and I haven’t even seen the actual print publication. I will post scans here when I get my hands on it.Ambigrams get famous in the Chess world. Ambigrams were always a part of Ram Narsimhan’s website devoted to Vishwanathan Anand (India’s first Grandmaster). Then it was picked up by ChessWatch (now defunct). More interestingly ambigrams ended up being featured in an Chess.fm Internet radio advertisement. I didn’t get a chance to hear it but this is how it went:
<A few chess rumors>… What about the rumor that Anand is actually an Ambigram? Read all about this and other chess curiosities in ChessWatch… ” (Thanks to Ram Narasimhan for telling me about this).
Finally, Ram asked me to create a few chess related ambigrams. One of the words he gave me was “Fritz”, maybe the second best chess playing computer program in the world today. Well I did create one (see it here) and it ended up in an article on ChessBase.com (Here is a link to the article on the chessbase website, and another to an archived version on my site).
My work was covered in the Sunday edition of MidDay (a daily newspaper published from Mumbai, India) on the 25th of May, 2003. You can read the article on the MidDay web site or as archived on this site (this link may be more reliable).
You can also read the interview that led to the above article.
My friend, Gaurav Bhatnagar, writes a popular Mathematics column for a East-Delhi newspaper. I contributed a guest column back in December 2002. You can see the pdf version by clicking here.
An ambigram (cause-effect) I designed made it to the cover of a book written by Gary Cziko (Professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign). The book is titled “The things we do: Using the lessons of Bernard and Darwin to understand what, how, and why of our behavior” and is published by MIT press. You can see the cover here.