So what are you doing to celebrate Pi Day (3.14.15)?
“… an Egyptian scribe named Ahmes … gave one of the earliest and most accurate values of pi. He documented it in a Middle Kingdom papyrus scroll written around 1650BC, which was in fact a copy of an even earlier scroll. Ahmes described pi as the result of dividing 256 by 81, or 3.160.… However, it was Archimedes who is credited as being the first to elevate the calculation of pi to a more theoretical discipline. It is for that reason the number is sometimes known as Archimedes' constant.”1
Pi Day is usually celebrated on March 14, at one minute to two in the afternoon, recognizing the epic number’s first few digits-- 3:14:1:59.2 But in 2015, Pi Day is special. For the first time in a century, the year’s date continues the actual number’s exact digits: 3.1415.
MIT, where they take the celebration seriously each year, usually releases its fall acceptances to new students on 3/14, but in 2015, they’re sending them out precisely at 9:26 am (ET), a nod to the decimal’s next three digits.
Pie of various kinds is the natural choice of food for celebrating March 14. Pizza makers and bakeries will certainly be busy prepping dough and other toppings and fillings on March 13, to accommodate the number of pies they’re hoping to sell (if they haven’t started already). Pie-throwing fundraisers and pie-eating contests are being held in many places as well. Even some planetariums and science museums around the U.S. are offering free admission that day, and serving pie.
Here are some other ways this year to show your love of pi, our favorite irrational and transcendental number:
-- Zazzle and CafePress offer a wide variety of merch with Pi Day 2015 on it.
-- There are also Pinterest boards dedicated to Pi Day to peruse, for party ideas.
-- MathMovesU.com offers free Pi Day e-cards to exchange with your friends.
-- What could be more appropriate for the celebration than downloading some pi wallpaper for your computer?
Are you a hashtagger? The hashtag list for Pi Day 2015 from Google+ includes #PI, #PiE, #NationalPieWeek, and #PieWeek. And on Twitter, established hashtags include #PiDay, #piday2015, and #pidaymagic.
NOTE: (Pi day also happens to be Einstein’s birthday, in case you need something else to celebrate).
For more science, technology and math resources, take a look through one of the ProQuest products below, and request a free trial for your library:
1. THE LIFE OF; The United States accords pi the ultimate accolade tomorrow, its own national day. Most hazily remember it from our schooldays, here Steve Connor charts its history and celebrates a number that is irrational, transcendental... and unique in praise of an eternal number. (2006, Mar 13). The Independent
2. Knox, J. (2004, Mar 14). This hot little number just keeps going. Times – Colonist