Mathematical Resources

Surfing the Internet

Where can you search for the value of pi?

Do you want to know more about pi? Your answer might be on the Internet site located at Here resides The Pi Searches, a site that lets you search for any string of digits—up to 120 of them—in the first 200 million numbers of pi. According to the site’s “caretaker,” Dave Anderson, “The Pi Searcher uses a combination of linear search (searching each digit one by one) for small search strings and a pre-computed index for large search strings. The result is that the Pi Searcher is extremely fast —it takes less than 1/50th of a second to handle most requests.”

Anderson even mentions such fun activities (and keeps it updated) as “The Pi Day 2011.” Yes, there is a Pi Day, a holiday commemorating the mathematical constant. It is celebrated on March 14 (or 3/14 in month/day date format), since 3, 1, and 4 are the three most significant digits of π in the decimal form. In fact, it has become so popular it is celebrated by schools that join in the festivities. In 2009, the U.S. House of Representatives supported the designation of Pi Day. Not to be outdone, there is also a Pi Approximation Day on July 22 (or 22/7 in day/month date format), since the fraction 22/7 is a common approximation of pi.


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