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International Day of Mathematics

International Day of Mathematics March 14

The UNESCO Executive Board decided in October 2018 to endorse a recommendation, coordinated by the International Mathematical Union, to proclaim an International Day of Mathematics on 14th March each year. This recommendation is on the agenda for the UNESCO General Conference in November 2019 an, if adopted, will have its first official celebration on 14th March 2020, where the proposed theme is ‘Mathematics is Everywhere‘.

Preparations in anticipation for the adoption seem to be heating up, with a publicity drive underway. The IDM website says it will share free materials, projects, ideas and software, as well as a map of worldwide events and gatherings, all in multiple languages and under open licenses. You can sign up for a “one or two emails per month at most” mailing list to keep informed.

More information: The IMU wants to make π Day the International Day of Mathematics (October 2018).

I’m streaming digits of π for π day

It’s π eve, and I’ve had a silly idea: I’m going to take the ridiculous website I made to show all the digits of π, and stream it scrolling indefinitely through them over the internet.

Starting at midnight GMT on 2019-03-14, the stream below will start scrolling down through the digits of π:

I had this idea this morning, and it’s running on my desktop PC which I’ll be away from until 8am tomorrow, so I won’t be surprised if something goes wrong.

But if it doesn’t: hooray!

Doodling for π day

It’s that time of year again – 3.14 (March 14th), a.k.a π day, is just around the corner, and if you want to do something fun on the day, now’s the time to plan it. One nice way to celebrate this brilliant infinite string of digits is by creating π-inspired art, and we’ve spotted a couple of relevant links if that’s your jam.

  • Maths learning organisation (and Carnival of Mathematics stalwarts) Ganit Charcha are running a competition for schools in India, challenging them to ‘Doodle for π‘ – students should take inspiration from a mathematical concept, and create a doodle/image to submit. The competition invites creativity and imagination, and runs until 12th March.
  • If you’re not in India, you can still use π as inspiration for artworks – Think Maths speaker and Aperiodical Math-off contestant Zoe Griffiths has put together a set of ideas for how to use π to create beautiful pictures, to decorate your home, school or office.

The IMU wants to make π Day the International Day of Mathematics

The International Mathematical Union is trying to get UNESCO to make March 14, commonly known as π Day, the International Day of Mathematics.

“π – It’s Complicated” – a talk I gave on Pi Day 2016 at Ustinov College Café Scientifique

I was invited to give a talk for Ustinov College’s Café Scientifique on π Day this year. The turnout wasn’t great and I put quite a bit of effort into the slides, so I wanted to put it online. I’ve finally got hold of the recording, so here it is. Unfortunately they didn’t set the camera’s exposure properly, making the screen illegible, so you’ll probably want to follow along with the slides in another window.

I tried to come up with a way of writing today’s date as a multiple of π Day, but couldn’t make it work. However, I did realise that Halloween (31/10) is the best approximation to π between now and the next π day (I think). Sπooky!

Ohioans measure a really big π

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Ohio State University mathematician Niles Johnson got in touch on Friday to tell us that our π Approximation Challenge last year had inspired him to hatch an audacious plan to measure a really big π.

The word ‘geometry’ is derived from the Greek for ‘measurement of land’, and Dr. Johnson took that quite literally: he wanted to measure the Great Circle Earthworks in Heath, Ohio; a part of the Newark Earthworks (not their original name) built over 2,000 years ago.

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