Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Tau Manifesto


This is based on Michael Hartl's The Tau Manifesto which is dedicated to one of the most important numbers in mathematics, perhaps the most important: the circle constant relating the circumference of a circle to its linear dimension. For millennia, the circle has been considered the most perfect of shapes, and the circle constant captures the geometry of the circle in a single number. Of course, the traditional choice of circle constant is Pi but, as mathematician Bob Palais notes in his delightful article “Pi Is Wrong!”, Pi is wrong. It’s time to set things right." I can't remember how I came about this article, but the geek in me naturally drew me to read and understand this. And I must say, it is very convincing! Now, I realize why trigonometry seemed a little off and illogical, and I could only wish that my teachers then used tau instead of pi. Things could have been a lot easier to understand, and a lot of us could have loved math a lot more. I wished I was able to finish this Moleskine entry on June 28 which coincidentally is Tau Day!

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