As Easy as PI – Symbol of Digital History

The origins of Pi are as ancient and mysterious as the number itself.

First recorded use of Pi symbol by William JonesBut, thanks to digital history and fantastic cloud-based archives that we can all use to search and find the information we need and want, we found the real answers to at least some of the mystery!

The concept of Pi, or the mathematical value of the the circumference of a circle, has been around for thousands of years.  The problem was, no one knew how to refer to it.  Not until William Jones came along, that is.

Let us introduce you to a New Introduction of Mathematics:

In 1706, a British mathematician named William Jones with a fascination with the Orient chose to use ∏, the Greek symbol for Pi, to represent the equation in his text, Synopsis Palmariorum Matheseos.

And, thanks to digital imaging, Google’s generosity, and the Internet Archive Project, you, too, can read page 253 of William Jones’ text, and the first use of Pi.

 

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