Happy Pi Day! 3/14

Monday, March 14, 2011
"Just look at that", Currin said almost crossly as he pointed to the envelope of space under a hand in one of Rembrandt's portraits. "It's exact and indefinite. It's like pi--you can keep figuring it out and always be right and never be done."

-- Peter Schjeldahl, quoting the painter John Currin

Today is Pi Day! March 14th is 3/14, the first few digits in "pi", that most famous of irrational numbers. It's also Einstein's birthday, making Pi Day a nerd holiday extraordinaire!

Pi is what you get when you divide the circumference of any circle by its diameter. It's always the same (a little more than 3), but it's such a finicky number that you can never be 100% exact on its value. It has an inifinite number of decimal points, which means that somewhere along the way you have to round it off to write it down. That's why it's usually represented as a symbol instead of an actual number.

To celebrate (and since I happen to have today off work) I'm thinking about making a "pi pie". Hmmm, the trick is choosing the flavor...


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