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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Pi day ..... and when Bomaby Jayashri missed Oscar !!

Bombay Jayashri Ramnath receiving the Sangeetha Vedantha Dhureena Award instituted by Sri Rama Lalitha Kala Mandira, Bangalore, on 1st February, 2015.

This post might not enthuse those of us who have always been confounded and bemused by ‘Mathematics’ subject (not that we had mastery over other subjects !)…… Sure have heard of ‘Pi” - one of the most important Mathematical constants.  In 2009, the US House of Represenatives agreed to observe a particular day of the Year as Pi day… do you know what day is Pi day ?  ~ simple to decipher !!

For thousands of years mathematicians have attempted to extend their understanding of Pi, sometimes by computing its value to a high degree of accuracy.  Pi (π) is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. Pi is a constant number, meaning that for all circles of any size, Pi will be the same. The diameter of a circle is the distance from edge to edge, measuring straight through the center. The circumference of a circle is the distance around.

The number π is a mathematical constant, the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter, approximately equal to 3.14159. It has been represented by the Greek letter "π" since the mid-18th century though it is also sometimes spelled out as "pi" (/paɪ/). Being an irrational number, π cannot be expressed exactly as a common fraction. Consequently its decimal representation never ends and never settles into a permanent repeating pattern. The digits appear to be randomly distributed although no proof of this has yet been discovered.  Fractions such as 22/7 and other rational numbers are commonly used to approximate π.

Now coming to the day ~ ‘Pi Day’  is an annual American celebration commemorating the mathematical constant π (pi). Pi Day is observed on March 14 (or 3/14 in the month/day date format), since 3, 1, and 4 are the first three significant digits of π in decimal form. In 2009, the United States House of Representatives supported the designation of Pi Day.

Pi Day has been observed in many ways, including eating pie, throwing pies and discussing the significance of the number π. Some schools hold competitions as to which student can recall Pi to the highest number of decimal places. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has often mailed its application decision letters to prospective students for delivery on Pi Day.  Starting in 2012, MIT has announced it will post those decisions (privately) online on Pi Day at exactly 6:28 pm, which they have called "Tau Time", to honor the rival numbers Pi and Tau equally.  The town of Princeton, New Jersey, hosts numerous events in a combined celebration of Pi Day and Albert Einstein's birthday, which is also March 14.  Einstein lived in Princeton for more than twenty years while working at the Institute for Advanced Study.

Away – ‘Life of Pi’  is a 2012 American 3D live-action computer-animated adventure drama film based on Yann Martel's 2001 novel of the same name. Directed by Ang Lee, the film's adapted screenplay was written by David Magee, and it stars Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Rafe Spall, Gérard Depardieu, Tabu, and Adil Hussain. The storyline revolves around an Indian man named Piscine Molitor "Pi" Patel, living in Canada and telling a novelist about his life story and how at 16 he survives a shipwreck in which his family dies, and is stranded in the Pacific Ocean on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.

Life of Pi emerged as a critical and commercial success, earning over $609 million worldwide. It was nominated for three Golden Globe Awards which included the Best Picture – Drama and the Best Director and won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score. At the 85th Academy Awards it had eleven nominations, including Best Picture, and won four awards : Best cinematography, Best visual effects, Best direction for Ang Lee and Best original score.   

Pi's Lullaby,  the intro song,  was composed by Mychael Danna and sung by Bombay Jayashri. The lyrics, in Tamil, were written by Bombay Jayashri.  The song earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song marking the first ever Tamil song to be nominated in the category.  Eventually,   British Singer - Adele Laurie Blue Adkins won the Academy award for the theme song "Skyfall"  of  the 2012 James Bond film of the same name.  ’Skyfall’ was indeed emotional for Adele as it marked her return to recording since the major surgery she underwent as a result of a vocal cord haemorrhage in late 2011.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

10th Feb 2015.

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