Mathematical Digest

Short Summaries of Articles about Mathematics
in the Popular Press

"A Digital Slice of Pi," by W. Wayt Gibbs. Scientific American, May 2003, pages23-24.

Subtitled "The New Way to Do Pure Math: Experimentally," this article concernsthe book Experiments in Mathematics by Jonathan M. Borwein and David H.Bailey. The book describes the growing influence of computers on mathematics.The title of the article refers to work done by Bailey and colleagues usingcomputers to discover a new formula for calculating the digits of pi. Theformula allows calculation of a digit without knowledge of the preceding digitsand according to Bailey may help prove that pi is normal.

--- Mike Breen