Just in time for Pi Day, a Google developer advocate has set a world record by successfully calculating the number Pi out to 31.4 trillion digits using the cloud.
Emma Haruka Iwao set the record by running a computer program “with crazy strong reliability” continuously for four months, according to a news release about the feat.
The number, which is the constant ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, has been previously calculated out to more than 1 trillion digits beyond its decimal point, according to piday.org, a website dedicated to celebrating the mathematical marvel.
Pi is typically expressed in shorthand as 3.14, which explains why it’s celebrated on March 14. It’s an irrational and transcendental number that will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern, mathematicians say.
The number has been known for thousands of years, but it only started to be called Pi, after the Greek letter, about 300 years ago. Used in geometry, architecture, construction and other disciplines, Pi is used to calculate the circumference of circles as being 3.1415926535897932384626433832795 times larger than its diameter.
The first official time that Pi Day was celebrated on a large scale was on March 14, 1988, at the San Francisco Exploratorium, where physicist Larry Shaw organized circular marches and pie-eating expeditions, according to the Pi Day site.
While it would be appropriate to celebrate Pi Day by drawing circles, or by calculating the circumference of circles around your office or home, most people these days commemorate the occasion by eating pie.
To assist you in your quest for sweet or savory pies, here is a list of places offering specials for the occasion:
- Anywhere — Pi Day virtual 5K, which you can run anytime in March.
- BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse in Redmond and Southcenter Mall — Mini one-topping pizzas for $3.14.
- California Pizza Kitchen in Southcenter Mall and Bellevue Square — Get a slice of key lime pie for $3.14 while supplies last.
- Conor Byrne Pub, 5140 Ballard Ave N.W., Seattle (6:30-8 p.m.) — Free samples of pie from pro and amateur pastry chefs, plus a raffle to benefit The Vera Project.
- The Cookie Counter, 7415 Greenwood Ave. N, Seattle — Small apple, cherry, and oatmeal pies are on sale at the vegan bakery, with 15 percent of the proceeds going to the Technology Access Foundation.
- Hellbent Brewing, 13035 Lake City Way N.E. — Pie-sharing potluck.
- High 5 Pie, 11620 Ambaum Boulevard S.W. in Burien — Slices of pie for $3.14 through the week.
- Pagliacci Pizza, multiple locations (except Greenwood, Queen Anne and downtown Kirkland) — Two slices of pizza for $3.14, or buy one 11-inch pizza and get the second for $3.14.
- Serious Pie, Seattle (3-5 p.m. at downtown locations, 3-6 p.m. at Westlake location) — Pizzas for $3.14.
- 7-Eleven, multiple locations — Slice of pizza for 50 cents when you download the 7-Eleven app.
- Westlake Park — Annual pie-eating contest from noon to 1 p.m. Ten people will compete for a Serious Pie gift card. You can sign up to participate at a kiosk there, if you’re early enough, but watching is almost as fun.