Happy Pi Day I

photo by jorel314 (cc by 2.0)
photo by jorel314 (cc by 2.0)

It can be of no practical use to know that Pi is irrational, but if we can know, it surely would be intolerable not to know.

Edward Titchmarsh

I don’t remember anyone ever mentioning Pi Day when I was in school, but any excuse to celebrate math sounds like fun. March 14 at 1:59 (a.m. or p.m.) is about as close as the calendar can get to 3.14159…

Here are a few pi-related links you may find interesting:

A History of Pi

Pi at Wikipedia

Search for your birthday, or any other special number, in the digits of pi
[The string 314159 occurs at position 176,451 counting from the first digit after the decimal point.]

How to Calculate Pi by Throwing Frozen Hot Dogs
[hat tip: Grey Matters]

Or how to simulate the frozen hot dog experiment with a Java applet

And why the experiment works

March 14 Is Albert Einstein’s Birthday

Albert Einstein’s math biography

Math-related quotes from Albert Einstein

Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love.

How on earth can you explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love?

Put your hand on a stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with that special girl for an hour and it seems like a minute. That’s relativity.

Albert Einstein


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5 thoughts on “Happy Pi Day I

    1. I’d love to hear the story — it sounds intriguing.

      It’s a fun quote. Maybe not much help to a young physics student trying to wrap a confused brain around the behavior of space and time. But lovely fun.

  1. Hi Denise,
    It seems that the comical illustration was given to a girl secretary, Helen Dukas, by Einstein because so many reporters had asked her to explain relativity. The New York Times reporter wrote the first version of it in 1929. Others wrote it and the nice girl became a pretty girl. It is like a long-term game of telephone. Every time some retold the story, it changed a bit.
    I think it is funny that he hired a young lady secretary to answer questions for him. Can you imagine having that job? I agree it is a fun story. It sounded like a Groucho Marx quote to me.

    Here’s a link to my source:
    https://quoteinvestigator.com/2014/11/24/hot-stove/

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