An irrational number is one that cannot be expressed as a fraction. Pi is a famous irrational number. People have calculated Pi to over one million decimal places and still there is no pattern.
A mathematical constant is a special number, usually a real number, that is "significantly interesting in some way". Constants arise in many different areas of mathematics, with constants such as e and π occurring in such diverse contexts as geometry, number theory and calculus.
What it means for a constant to arise "naturally", and what makes a constant "interesting", is ultimately a matter of taste, and some mathematical constants are notable more for historical reasons than for their intrinsic mathematical interest. The more popular constants have been studied throughout the ages and computed to many decimal places.
Approximations of π
In mathematics, an irrational number is any real number that cannot be expressed as a ratio a/b, where a and b are integers and b is non-zero.
Informally, this means that an irrational number cannot be represented as a simple fraction. Irrational numbers are those real numbers that cannot be represented as terminating or repeating decimals. As a consequence of Cantor's proof that the real numbers are uncountable (and the rationals countable) it follows that almost all real numbers are irrational.
Square root of 2
This page is about the history of approximations for the mathematical constant pi (π). There is a table summarizing the πchronology of computation of . See also the πhistory of for other aspects of the evolution of our knowledge about mathematical properties of π.
The square root of 2, often known as root 2, radical 2, or Pythagoras's constant, and written as , is the positive algebraic number that, when multiplied by itself, gives the number 2. It is more precisely called the principal square root of 2, to distinguish it from the negative number with the same property.
Geometrically the square root of 2 is the length of a diagonal across a square with sides of one unit of length; this follows from the Pythagorean theorem. It was probably the first number known to be irrational. Its numerical value truncated to 65 decimal places is:
Mathematical analysis is a branch of mathematics that includes the theories of differentiation, integration, measure, limits, infinite series, and analytic functions. These theories are usually studied in the context of real and complex numbers and functions. Analysis evolved from calculus, which involves the elementary concepts and techniques of analysis. Analysis may be distinguished from geometry. However, it can be applied to any space of mathematical objects that has a definition of nearness (a topological space) or specific distances between objects (a metric space).
Early results in analysis were implicitly present in the early days of ancient Greek mathematics. For instance, an infinite geometric sum is implicit in Zeno's paradox of the dichotomy. Later, Greek mathematicians such as Eudoxus and Archimedes made more explicit, but informal, use of the concepts of limits and convergence when they used the method of exhaustion to compute the area and volume of regions and solids. In India, the 12th century mathematician Bhāskara II gave examples of the derivative and used what is now known as Rolle's theorem.