Correctly interpreted, you know, pi contains the entire history of the human race. –Dr. Irving Joshua Matrix Consider the quotation from Dr. Matrix, the arch-numerologist of Martin Gardner’s book “The Magic Numbers of Dr. Matrix“. You may laugh, but try to disprove his assertion. Amazingly, Dr. Matrix is probably correct! Let us take the statement to its logical extreme: pi is omniscient. By this we mean that pi encodes in its digits the totality of human knowledge, past, present, and future–and probably more…. An apparently absurd claim–and one which is almost certainly true! First, let us try a little experiment. Can pi “count”? That is, does the pattern “1, 2, 3, …., n” appear in pi’s digit sequence 3, 1, 4, 1, 5, …. for all n? (We split the digits of numbers larger than 9 in the pattern, for example, if n = 11, then the pattern is […] Read More

# Category: Math

Mike Keith April 1999 Martin Gardner’s fictional “Doctor Matrix” used to say that, properly interpreted, the number pi (the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter, whose decimal expansion begins 3.14159265358979323846…) contains the entire history of mankind. In this article I give some results of looking at pi in a relatively new way: as an infinite string of letters derived from its expansion in base 26 or base 27. (Side note: Ivars Peterson’s MathTrek column for April 2000 reports on some of these findings in a tongue-in-cheek style very reminiscent of the aforementioned Dr. Matrix.) Base 26 Base 26 is one of two fairly natural ways of representing numbers as text using a 26-letter alphabet. The number of interest is expressed numerically in base 26, and then the 26 different base-26 digits are identified with letters as 0=A, 1=B, 2=C, … 25=Z. Here are the first […] Read More

A first glimpse of a postmodern physics, in which mass, inertia and gravity arise from underlying electromagnetic processes Bernard Haisch, Alfonso Rueda & H.E. Puthoff published in THE SCIENCES, Vol. 34, No. 6, November / December 1994, pp. 26-31 copyright 1994, New York Academy of Sciences (posted with permission) The most famous of all equations must surely be E=mc2. In popular culture that relation between energy and mass is virtually synonymous with relativity, and Einstein, its originator, has become a symbol of modern physics. The usual interpretation of the equation is that one kind of fundamental physical thing, mass (m in the equation), can be converted into a quite different kind of fundamental physical thing, energy (E in the equation), and vice versa; the two quantities are inextricably intertwined, related by the factor c2, the square of the velocity of light. The energy of the sun, for instance, comes […] Read More