a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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The Star Dummy (1952)
Anthony Boucher

Contributed by Gerry Myerson

I learned duodecimal (and the whole concept of number bases) from "The Star Dummy," by Boucher, in Conklin's Omnibus of Science Fiction. The teddybear-shaped six- fingered alien was trying to communicate with the koalas in the zoo until an open-minded human showed up and the two traded written numbers.

Originally published in Fantastic in 1952.

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Works Similar to The Star Dummy
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. In the River by Justin Stanchfield
  2. Report from the Ambassador to Cida-2 by Clifton Cunningham
  3. The Heroic Adventures of Hercules Amsterdam by Melissa Glenn Haber
  4. Into the Comet by Arthur C. Clarke
  5. The Day the Earth Stood Still by Robert Wise (director) / Harry Bates (story) / Edmund H. North
  6. Mathematica by John Russell Fearn
  7. By a Fluke by Arthur Porges
  8. The Feeling of Power by Isaac Asimov
  9. Mathematica Plus by John Russell Fearn
  10. The Unwilling Professor by Arthur Porges
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GenreScience Fiction,
TopicAlgebra/Arithmetic/Number Theory,
MediumShort Stories,

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May 2016: I am experimenting with a new feature which will print a picture of the cover and a link to the page for a work of mathematical fiction when it is available. I hope you find this useful and convenient. In any case, please write to let me know if it is because I would be happy to either get rid of it or improve it if that would be better for you. Thanks! -Alex

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)