Friday, April 9, 2021

 It’s National Pi Day!  

March 14, 2021 – 6:15 am ET
By Rich Weissman, Palm Springs, California (

March 14th is National Pi Day (π)! It’s 3.14 (which is pi) and also Albert Einstein’s birthday. Using Pythagoras’ theorem (500’s BC), which was “proven” by Euclid (300’s BC - Euclid was the founder of geometry and of the proof methodology), and Archimedes (200’s BC), discovered the irrational and infinite geometric decimal we now call pi. Pi was only recently named in the 1700’s by a Welsh mathematician (William Jones), because pi is the first letter in the Greek word perimitros, meaning perimeter (or circumference for a circle). These Greek geniuses, along with Al Kwarizmi (Persian poly mathematician in the 800’s who created the quadratic equation and the field of algebra - from the Arabic term al-jibar), and others in the far and middle east, and then in Europe, allowed for later discoveries of trigonometry, calculus, matrix algebra, descriptive and inferential statistics (which is based on many trigonometric functions, algebra and calculus), and other forms of mathematics. 

Without these discoveries, our lives today would be much different as we wouldn’t have the math (and hence the science) needed to create a modern world. And let’s not forget Albert Einstein who created modern physics (building on Newton, who also created calculus, and Galileo who were the first to discover the laws of physics). Einstein worked with Emmy Noether, who created abstract algebra (Noether’s theorem), necessary for modern physics (and to think, both Einstein and Noether were Jews who had to flee from Nazi persecution). In Archimedes’ honor, on Einstein’s birthday, I think we should celebrate Pi Day by eating lots of pies. Maybe I’ll have 3.14 pies (peach, cherry, apple, and a small slice of blackberry). 

BTW, at my company, at our corporate office, we named each conference room after a great mathematician - Euclid, Al Kwarizmi, Noether, Newton, and others, and of course, Karl Pearson, the creator of statistical testing, including the correlation coefficient, chi-square, and the t-test, and who brought more complex probability measurement analytics front and center in the discipline of statistics (that was my area of my Ph.D. program). We had very large framed posters on the walls in their respective conference rooms with their faces (ancient drawings/paintings/old photos), a description of each mathematician, and the most famous formula each created. We paid homage to these great minds, and they inspired us to think of new and creative forms of data analytics. Within the company, we had our think tank, whose only role was to create new ideas and concepts in multivariate data modeling technologies (we created a cutting-edge inferential cognition system which integrated behavioral, demographic, geographic, psychographic, econometric, financial, transactional, and many other complex data sets to develop algorithms and advanced intelligence through data interactionism). And it was fun (albeit hard work. So hats off to Archimedes and the discovery of pi, and to some tasty pie eating.