MITS: S1 Ep6 (π second serving)


Springfield has gone super (again!) so last week I explored the appearance of pi throughout the Simpsons and in this promised sequel I will go back and explore and explain those appearances in more details …


Last week we looked at how Frink uses the statement pi equals three to silence a group of scientists. I hinted that this was a parody of an attempt fail to change the value of Pi to see are the details …

In 1897 a physician, who was a huge lover of maths, named Edward J. Goodwin started to play around with a term called ‘squaring the circle’ which is an ancient theory that questioned if you could calculate the area of a circle using only a compass and a straight line/edge hoping to find a square with equal area to a circle. Sounds like an easy way to learn areas of a circle. Cool! Let’s just change the curriculum. Pi is easy! WRONG! The fact is that this theory is invalid and it is impossible to work out the area of a circle in such a simple way.

But Goodwin continued to play around with the idea even though mathematicians had known that it was impossible years ago in 1882 when Ferdinand Von Lindemann had proven the theory wrong! He was so certain that it was solvable and when he believed he had ‘proven’ this case he convinced the American Mathmatical Monthly to put his proof to his ‘solution’ to how he ‘solved’ the problem.

The simple fact is that he is wrong. Although his cocky approach to the solution he was wrong! W-R-O-N-G Goodwin but I commemorate your attempt.

The idea to make pi 3 is a myth but the above story isn’t.

Here are some more pi news …

Pi NewsGet some circle facts by clicking here

Some more pi facts (with a hint of randomness) can be found here

Read more on the myth of the attempt to make pi three and about Goodwin here

And a favourite of mine: some true geeky pi jokes here

I am happy to explain any of the jokes in the above link if you ask in the comments … I will at least find out for you 🙂

Next week on MITS …

Finally explore what this means:


So … How was the second serving of pie pi? Stuffed full of random pi knowledge in the Simpsons? Did you learn pi from the link in the last post? Tell us below as we always give them a read, Happy Tapping …


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