I just realized that Pi Day is almost over, and thought I should post a little something on the subject. However (and I hope π (pi) does not take offense), a good bit of what I will post is a bit anti-π. For instance…
- I’ve finally given in to the idea that π is not the legitimate holder of the title of “circle constant,” and that the title should go to τ (or tau, the name suggested by the value’s proponents for 2π). For those (few) interested in the reasoning, check out tauday.com. I admit that what happens to everyone’s favorite equation (explained here) does not please me (and the attempt to sooth that reaction by author of the Tau Manifesto doesn’t succeed much), but the evidence is hard to ignore.
- I wish that my favorite constant got more attention: e. However, I recognize that e‘s value, 2.718281828459045235360…, doesn’t lend itself to being made into a day easily, since 2/7 only carries two significant digits. Some, however, have taken to using the Day/Month format and celebrating e Day on January 27 (27/1). Perhaps, rather, there could be a build up to the e-minute at 6:28PM on February 7. I don’t know. e just doesn’t get the respect it deserves. Poor little guy. Though perhaps September 18 might be a good date to celebrate e. Anyone know why?
- As a day to muse on things mathematical, I’ll point out that it’s interesting to me that two of the posts on this blog that have the longest tail of search engine hits (meaning they continue to get hits regularly long after they were written) are the one I wrote on why a negative times a negative is a positive and the one about why 0.999999… equals 1. So hopefully I have contributed to someone’s understanding somewhere about something.
Enjoy the remainder of Pi Day! (Unless you’re a protester holding out for Tau Day, of course, in which case we’ll see you in June.)