March 14 is quite a day! For those who are wondering what it is, it’s Pi Day. As to why a Google Doodle is celebrating the 30th anniversary of Pi, it is because the mathematical constant touches infinity in numerous ways. For instance, there are astounding formulae in which smaller and smaller numbers add up to pi and one of the earliest such infinite series to be discovered says that pi equals four times the sum 1 – 1⁄3 + 1⁄5 – 1⁄7 + 1⁄9 – 1⁄11 + ⋯. Pi, which is quite popular among students around the world as it represents the ratio of the circumference of any circle to its diameter.
Today, Google doodle honors ‘Pi’, the mathematical constant that never ends and never shows a pattern, with a pie. The doodle has been created by award-winning pastry chef Dominique Ansel. Ansel, in his signature chef style, honoured the mathematical constant by demonstrating the pi formula using his personal Salted Caramel Apple Pie recipe.
Let us know some interesting facts about Pi:
- Memorizing Pi has been something that has fascinated people and there have been straight records for the same with the record for the most digits of pi being memorized by Rajveer Meena of Vellore, India, who recited 70,000 decimal places of pi on March 21, 2015, according to The Guinness Book Of World Records.
- Did you know that there is Pi language? The Pilish dialect was invented, in which the numbers of letters in successive words matched the digits of pi. Mike Keith wrote a book “Not A Wake” entirely in Pilish.
- Pi can be calculated by hand. Wondering how? Draw a circle with a protractor and then measure its diameter or radius with a ruler. Although it involves a fair amount of deftness and accuracy, it is possible.
- Pi’s existence was recorded as early as almost 4,000 years ago. A Babylonian tablet from between 1900 B.C. and 1680 B.C. calculates pi as 3.125, and the Rhind Mathematical Papyrus of 1650 B.C., a famous Egyptian mathematical document, lists a value of 3.1605.
- Pi does not belong in the category of normal numbers, at least it is believed so by Mathematicians.
Pi Day was first celebrated by physicist Larry Shaw at the Exploratorium in San Francisco almost 30 years ago and incidentally in 2009, the United States House of Representatives voted in favour of designating 3/14 as Pi Day. With people all over celebrating today, NASA too has invited the public to celebrate Pi Day (March 14) by organising a “Pi in the Sky” challenge. The challenge, which was created by the Education Office of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, is now in its fifth year. It features math problems for calculating Martian earthquakes, helium rain on Jupiter and the rotation rate of the asteroid ‘Oumuamua.