The content of this blog is my personal opinion only. Although I am an employee - currently of Nvidia, in the past of other companies such as Iagination Technologies, MIPS, Intellectual Ventures, Intel, AMD, Motorola, and Gould - I reveal this only so that the reader may account for any possible bias I may have towards my employer's products. The statements I make here in no way represent my employer's position, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of my employer. In fact, this posting may not even represent my personal opinion, since occasionally I play devil's advocate.

See http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcxddbtr_23cg5thdfj for photo credits.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Love it!!!!!


Pi is wrong.

Not mathematically - but observes that setting some other symbol to be what we now call 2pi or 6.28... leads to many simplifications in formulae, many fewer factors of 2 - and probably far fewer errors.

The astounding thing is how recent the modern use of pi=3.14... emerged. Of course, mathematicians back to the Greeks knew the concept, but the convention arose only in the 18th century, and stuck when Euler used it, borrowing it from a much less prominent Welsh mathematician. (I want to say "an obscure Welsh mathematician, William Jones, but I'll get in trouble for that.) Euler apparently previously used p/c, where p is the periphery and c the radius of any circle.

I'm just piling on to a flash mob, and I'm arriving late. But, what the heck.