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What this country needs is either a good five cent cigar or a new mnemonic for the value of Pi.

Here is Pi to the first fifty decimal places...

3. 14159 26535 89793 23846 26433 83279 50288 41971 69399 37510

And here is the challange...

Create a mnemonic for pi to as many decimal places as you please by using the respective numbers as the number of letters in a word unit that makes sense in a sentence structure.

Confused? This is child's play. Here is an example from the book Pi: A Biography of the World's Most Mysterious Number...

    3.  1   4    1     5        9      2    6
May I have a large container of coffee?

Get it? The best Pi mnemonic from the book has digits for the first fourteen decimal places (3.14159265358979) and is...

"How I want a drink, alcoholic of course, after the heavy lectures involving quantum mechanics."

Sounds like fun, I'm off to see what I can construct. Goodnight.


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Marilyn Vos Savant, I think, published a mnemonic poem for the places of pi last year. I clipped it and lost it. Drat. But the poem covered dozens of places. Did anyone keep it?


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There exist mnemonic devices for pi such as this that are astonishingly long. Such as the following, which I found at http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Lab/3550/pimnem.htm

But why stop at silly poems? Let's go for a really silly story. It's from The Mathematical Intelligencer, Vol.8 No.3, Pg.56/57 but I am not sure who wrote it. The story, which is a story about itself, contains the first 402 decimals of Pi. Any punctuation mark other than a period represents a zero digit. Words of longer than 9 letters represent two adjacent digits (for example, a twelve-letter word represents the two digits 1-2). A digit written literally stands for the same digit in the expansion (some would call this cheating). At least the author didn't reach decimal place 601, where we get 000. Or decimal place 772, where we encounter 9999998!

For a time I stood pondering on circle sizes. The large computer mainframe quietly processed all of its assembly code. Inside my entire hope lay for figuring out an elusive expansion. Value: pi. Decimals expected soon. I nervously entered a format procedure. The mainframe processed the request. Error. I, again entering it, carefully retyped. This iteration gave zero error printouts in all - success. Intently I waited. Soon, roused by thoughts within me, appeared narrative mnemonics relating digits to verbiage ! The idea appeared to exist but only in abbreviated fashion - little phrases typically. Pressing on I then resolved, deciding firmly about a sum of decimals to use - likely around four hundred, presuming the computer code soon halted! Pondering these ideas, words appealed to me. But a problem of zeros did exist. Pondering more, solution subsequently appeared. Zero suggests a punctuation element. Very novel! My thoughts were culminated. No periods, I concluded. All residual marks of punctuation = zeros. First digit expansion answer then came before me. On examining some problemsunhappily arose. That imbecilic bug! The printout I possessed showed four nine as foremost decimals. Manifestly troubling. Totally every number looked wrong. Repairing the bug took much effort. A pi mnemonic with letters truly seemed good. Counting of all the letters probably should suffice. Reaching for a record would be helpful. Consequently, I continued, expecting a good final answer from computer. First number slowly displayed on the flat screen - 3. Good. Trailing digits apparently were right also. Now my memory scheme must probably be implementable. The technique was chosen, elegant in scheme: by self reference a tale mnemonically helpful was ensured. An able title suddenly existed - ``Circle Digits". Taking pen I began. Words emanated uneasily. I desired more synonyms. Speedily I found my (alongside me) Thesaurus. Rogets is probably an essential in doing this, instantly I decided. I wrote and erased more. The Rogets clearly assisted immensely. My story proceeded (how lovely!) faultlessly. The end, above all, would soon joyfully overtake. So, this memory helper story is incontestably complete. Soon I will locate publisher. There a narrative will I trust immediately appear, producing fame. THE END..




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[in reply to M. Vos S.'s poem]

Yes, I read the poem too, but could not remember it. BUT...(thank goodness for google!)...

Sir, I send a rhyme excelling
In sacred truth and rigid spelling
Numerical sprites elucidate
For me the lexiconís full weight.


as I recall, someone brought this up in a previous topic as well...can't remember where, though!


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If I may, I'd like to offer an alternate challenge (since I've already given up on beating Alex's story): Try creating a similar mnemonic, but for another infinite decimal- phi. The first fifty digits are:

1. 61803 39887 49894 84820 45868 34365 63811 77203 09179 80576

You can find the first 20,000 places (!) here: http://goldennumber.net/phi20000.htm.


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O Rabbit I multiply, and see Fibonacci function measured rightly.


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3.1618033988749 (I've never tried this before.)

A veggie I digested, and raw naturally produced potatoes deliver good nutrients.




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You know what my problem is, Wordwind? My problen is that I think that Marilyn Vos Savant, the smartest woman in the world, is not as smart as the smartest man in Blount County.

Whew! This puzzle was hard work and turned out not-so-hot but at least I trumped, that woman, Marilyn Vos Savant, in spades by adding an acrostic bent.

Whew! It weren't worth it...none of my friends were impressed and now I'm kinda ashamed of my clumsy rhyme.

Oh well...here it is anyway...

3. 14159 26535 89793

Met A Rake I Liked Yesterday-
-No Virtue, Oozed Sin;
Slimy xxx-i-nine Volupteer,
xxxhole!- Nummerato Ten.

Yeah, I know my rhyme lacks meter, but hey, I took the letters MARILYN VOS SAVANT to sixteen places, that's good isn't it?





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I took the letters MARILYN VOS SAVANT to sixteen places, that's good isn't it?

I like it... the deed seems strangely familiar...


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Finally caught up in this category; 462 new posts--whew. Read most, skimmed some--then I came to this. You know, in some ways I am fairly lenient; and there are some "bad" words that I use regularly; but the a** word just offends me; it's worse than the b*** word that means the same thing, and I don't use that word either. So I think I have decided on other posts to skip over in the future. Regrets.


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