How could I have missed seeing this somewhere! You certainly come up with some interesting articles. Now that I know, I will watch media activity on the 15th when we are scheduled to see a performance of Cirque du Soleil here in Houston. I will see if they use pi in calculating their complex acts.
In high school, and later, using slide rule engineering in college, 3.1416 seemed fully adequate for most calculations. However, our resident genius mathematics instructor, Warren Z. Watson, the subject of a memoir I wrote about him and posted here in the story section some time ago, felt otherwise. With the help of the university's newly acquired IBM 1120 computer and its printer, as well as some students, Mr. Watson had the computer calculate and print out pi. He then had the students cut out the significant digits and attached the ends of the paper together and then placed them in the hallway on the second floor of Bowman Hall. The resulting string of digits went down one hall to the end and then turned around and came back all the way down the hall over the top of all the doorways. I don't know how many digits there were in all, I'm sure that Watson knew, but it was an impressive display of pi and the power of calculation by the computer that took many hours to calculate and print at that time 1961.