Archimedes and Pi Archimedes of Syracuse was truly a great thinker of his time. Not only did he develop one of the first advanced methods for calculating Pi, but he realized that Pi could not be nailed down to an exact value.
Archimedes and Pi • To approximate PI, Archimedes started with a circle inscribed between two polygons with four sides each. By doing this he understood that Pi was somewhere between the perimeter of the outer square divided by the distance from the middle of one of the sides to the middle of the side exactly opposite, and the similar ratio of the inner square
Archimedes and Pi • Continuing using this method, Archimedes used polygons of increasing multiple sides until the polygon resembled a circle
Archimedes and Pi • Archimedes eventually used a polygon with 96 sides to approximate Pi to be between 22/7 and 223/71 • Note that there were no decimals in Archimedes time, only fractions, which in turn makes it extremely hard to recognize the the concept of an irrational number. Continue With Lesson Pi Table of Contents