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Ramanujan, Modular Equations, and Approximations to Pi, or, How to Compute One Billion Digits of Pi

by David H. Bailey, Jonathan M. Borwein, Peter B. Borwein

Year of Award: 1993

Award: Chauvenet Prize, and also the Merten Hasse Award in 1993

Publication Information: The American Mathematical Monthly, vol.  96 (1989), pp. 201-219

Summary: This article follows up on one thread of Ramanujan’s work which has found a modern computational context, namely, one of his approaches to approximating pi.

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About the Authors  

David H. Bailey is Chief Technologist of the Computational Research Department of the Lawrence Livermore Berkeley Laboratory.  He received his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1976.  He leads the Future Technology Group and is the co-author of three books and a CD-ROM reference on experimental mathematics.

Jonathan M. Borwein was Shrum Professor of Science (1993-2003) and a Canada Research Chair in Information Technology (2001-08) at Simon Fraser University, and was founding Director of the Centre for Experimental and Constructive Mathematics. In 2004, he (re-)joined the Faculty of Computer Science at Dalhousie as a Canada Research Chair in Distributed and Collaborative Research, cross-appointed in Mathematics, with an adjunct appointment at Simon Fraser. He received his DPhil from Oxford in 1974, as a Rhodes Scholar. He is spending 2008 as a Visiting Professor Laureate at the University of Newcastle, NSW.

Peter B. Borwein (from The American Mathematical Monthly,Vol. 108 No. 5, (2001))  is a Professor of Mathematics at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, British Columbia. His Ph.D. is from the University of British Columbia under the supervision of David Boyd. After a postdoctoral year in Oxford and a dozen years at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, he took up his current position. He has authored five books and over a hundred research articles. His research interests span diophantine and computational number theory, classical analysis, and symbolic computation. He is co-recipient of the Chauvenet Prize and the Hasse Prize, both for exposition in mathematicswere at Dalhousie University.

Subject classification(s): Index
Publication Date: 
Friday, October 10, 2008