Mathematicians David Bailey of the

Ames Research Center, Peter Borwein of

Simon Fraser University and Simon Plouffe of the

Centre for Experimental and Constructive Mathematics (an organization located on the campus of Simon Fraser) back in

1995 developed an

algorithm for the

computation of the nth digit of

π,

π = sum<n=0 .. Infinity> ( T * (1/16)^n)

where

T = 4/(8n+1) - 2/(8n+4) - 1/(8n+5) - 1/(8n+6)

The kicker here though is that a single digit of the transcendent number is extracted, and as the (1/16)^n term indicates, that digit is in hexadecimal. Other algorithms must be used to convert the partial series of hexadecimal digits into decimal, or base 10.

The full announcement of the discovery of this algorithm, along with the results of their calculating the ten billionth digit of π in base 10 (which is a '9'!) can be found at ** http://www.mathsoft.com/asolve/plouffe/announce.txt**. A description of how the algorithm works for a non-technical audience is available at **http://www.mathsoft.com/asolve/plouffe/elmntary.txt**.