On Exploring a Piece of Pi

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I am ashamed to tell you to how many figures I carried these calculations, having no other business at the time. (Isaac Newton; philosopher, astronomer, physicist)

If equations are trains threading the landscape of numbers, then no train stops at pi.
~Richard Preston, journalist

This mysterious 3.141592…, which comes in at every door and window, and down every chimney. It is easier to square the circle than to get round a mathematician. (Augustus De Morgan, mathematician)

Whether any other Mathematician will appear, possessing sufficient leisure, patience, and facility of computation, to calculate the value of pi to a still greater extent, remains to be seen: all that the Author can say is, he takes leave of the subject for the present … (William Shanks, mathematician who spent a great part of his life in huge hand calculations of constants )

Ten decimal places of pi are sufficient to give the circumference of the earth to a fraction of an inch, and thirty decimal places would give the circumference of the visible universe to a quantity imperceptible to the most powerful microscope. (Simon Newcomb, astronomer)

The value of pi has engaged the attention of many mathematicians and calculators from the time of Archimedes to the present day, and has been computed from so many different formulae, that a complete account of its calculation would almost amount to a history of mathematics. ( James Glaisher, meteorologist)

A bell cannot tell time, but it can be moved in just such a way as to say twelve o’clock – similarly, a man cannot calculate infinite numbers, but he can be moved in just such a way as to say pi. (Daniel Tammet, author Thinking in Numbers: How Maths Illuminates Our)