Links for March 19th

  • Wolfram MathWorld: Pi Digits
    The first thirty million digits of pi are almost uniformly distributed. That is, 1 occurs with the same frequency as 2, 3, 4, etc. That's consistent with randomness, but hardly evidence of it.
  • Ludolph Van Ceulen’s Headstone
    This Dutch mathematician devoted his life to calculating pi. By the time of his death, in 1610, he had calculated the first 35 digits, a feat that by modern standards is a pathetic waste of a life, but for the time was an amazing accomplishment. He had the numbers inscribed on his headstone.
  • Gernot Katzer’s Spice Pages
    If you ever want to know anything about spices, I see no reason to look any place other than here.
  • New York Times: Palin’s Popularity Declines Among Republicans
    "[Sarah Palin's] ratings are now in the range of Al Sharpton and Pat Buchanan in the years before they ran for president, rather than those who were considered viable candidates."

Published by Waldo Jaquith

Waldo Jaquith (JAKE-with) is an open government technologist who lives near Char­lottes­­ville, VA, USA. more »

2 replies on “Links for March 19th”

  1. Re:Ludolph Van Ceulen’s Headstone,
    Jacob Bernoulli extensively studied the shapes and compositions of certain spirals that occur in nature, to the extent that logarithmic spirals are also known as bernoulli spirals. He wanted one inscribed on his headstone but the stonemason employed carved an archimedean spiral instead. Ooops.

  2. I had previously made no distinction between a logarithmic and an arithmetic spiral (I’d never even seen those terms), but as soon as I saw those two phrases, I could envision the difference. I’d love to know if his headstone was ever fixed. I certainly hope so.

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