A daily note on some event in the history of mystery fiction.
Tuesday, January 26, 2016
1/26/1987 Mathnet: To Cogitate and to solve
January 26, 1987. On this date PBS premiered Square One, a show that was aimed at middle school students, the very age group that starts losing their interest in math. Part of each episode was a serial called Mathnet, in which mathematicians working for the Los Angeles Police Department solve crimes with geometry, probability, and other such skills.
It was, in fact, a very clever parody of Dragnet. The Mystery Writers of America gave it an Edgar nomination in 1991, for my favorite episode "The Case of the Swami Scam". That one was based on actual con game involving predicting the winners of sports events. And you can watch it right here.