Obsessed Mathematicians Spend a Year Calculating the Ten Trillionth Digit of Pi (It’s 5 by the Way)

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It is considered by many to be the most important number in the world.

Essential to finding the circumference of a circle, Pi, valued at 3.14159265, is engrained in the minds of every school child.

But one pair of scientists have taken their obsession a step further and calculated the ten trillionth digit, doubling the record set two years ago by a super computer.

Many mathematicians try to round it down to 3.14 but Japanese IT expert Shigeru Kondo and U.S. student Alexander Yee have spent just over a year ballooning it in size.

Using a home PC that sent Kondo’s house temperature shooting up to 40 degrees, they also lost half a year as their computer failed to cope with the calculations.

‘We could dry the laundry immediately, but we had to pay 30,000 yen ($390) a month for electricity,’ Mr Kondo’s wife, Yukiko, said.

It was Yee who wrote the complex programme to calculate the huge number while Kondo built the super-PC, adding at least ten hard drives to make sure it could cope.

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