Pi, the mathematical term for the number 3.141592654?K or when spoken out loud, dozing math students are rudely awakened to think that their teacher is serving pie. Seriously though, Other than the score of last nights braves game or how many home runs Barry Bonds has hit, pi is probably the most talked about number in the mathematical world.?§The computation of pi is virtually the only topic from the most ancient stratum of mathematics that is still of serious interest to modern mathematics research?(Berggren 6).How can a problem as simple as dividing a circle?s circumference by its diameter, intrigue mathematicians for over four thousand years? The symbol, it?s history and applications in today?s world all help us to have a better understanding for the area of a circle.
The Rhind Papyrus, that dates back to 1650 BC, is the earliest form of this ratio.Written by an Egyptian scribe named Ahmes.His findings put him approximately one percent away from finding the true value of pi (Blatner, 8).The formula written on the Rhind Papyrus is also thefirst example of someone attempting to square a circle.The Babylonians and Hebrews simply used the value three for the ratio between circumference and diameter, which to our standards isn?t even close.History is filled with close calls, Archimedes, for instance came within three ten-thousandths from the true value of pi. Still more amazing he did it without the benefit of a symbol for zero or any knowledge of decimal notation.It wasn?t for another 650 years that someone came closer than Archimedes.In the year 263, a Chinese astronomer Tsu Ch?ung-chih and his son, Tsu Keng-chih.Using an inscribed polygon with as many as 24,576 sides found pi to be approximately 3.14159265?K only 8-millionths of one percent different from the accepted value of 3.14159264?K(Blatner, 25).An amateur mathematician named Franc

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