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Pi and the Babylonains
Transcript of Pi and the Babylonains
The Babylonians View
The ancient Babylonians knew of the existence of - the ratio of the circumference to the diameter of any circle. The constant they obtained, 3.125, made use of their knowledge that the perimeter of a regular hexagon inscribed in a circle equals six times the radius of the circle. By using this perimeter of the inscribed hexagon as a lower bound for the circumference of the circle, they were able to come up with their remarkably close approximation for circa 2000 B.C. [2, p.21].
While we’re used to a base 10 system, the Babylonians used a base 60 system. Also at the time the Babylonians had no place value, so if there’s the number “45″ only context can tell if they mean 45, 45/60, or 45/60*60.
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