March 14, 2007

For Small Values Of Pi

So today, 3-14 is Pi Day, if less so than it was back in 1592. I don't geek out much over the ineffable nonrepeatitude of the number. Even during the twenty years before I moved to Milwaukee, during which I used pi in a significant percentage of all the computation I did at work it was just another chunk of information for me. What I was calculating was the amount of steel required to be bent around a forming die. Because this was done hot, with the steel heated to a temperature not much below that of burning jet fuel, the material stretched as it was bent, requiring the introduction of a correction factor into the calculation. After collecting data regarding assorted sizes of alloy and mild steel barstock bent around assorted diameter dies, I came to the conclusion that for my purpose, pi equals three.

Posted by triticale at March 14, 2007 02:36 PM | TrackBack
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