Professor John Horton Conway, well known for inventing the 'Game of Life', passed away on Saturday 11 April in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
Professor Conway received his PhD in mathematics in 1964 from the University of Cambridge and then joined Sidney's Fellowship from 1964-1970. It was during this time that Conway's mathematical career flourished, and he became well known outside the world of mathematics with his invention of the 'Game of Life'.
The game uses an infinite grid of squares where all of the edges of the grid wrap around. Four simple rules determine which cells live and which cells die during each frame of the 'game'. The only parameters that are needed are the number and position of living cells at the start of the game, and the delay between each game frame.
Over his long career, Conway received numerous awards and made significant contributions to mathematics in the fields of group theory, number theory, algebra, geometric topology, theoretical physics, combinatorial game theory and geometry.
Conway’s numerous honours include the London Mathematical Society’s Berwick Prize and Pólya Prize, Northwestern University’s Nemmers Prize in Mathematics, and the American Mathematical Society’s Leroy P. Steele Prize for Mathematical Exposition. Conway was a Fellow of the Royal Society of London and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Conway remained a faculty member at Cambridge until he moved to Princeton University in 1987.
Princeton University are maintaining a blog intended to honour Conway’s life and legacy, and users can view or share comments there.
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