MAX pi

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Portland Oregon's MAX transit rail system connects from the city of Portland to Washington County (Beaverton, Hillsboro, etc.) via a deep transit tunnel under the "west hills". An elevator goes from the Zoo parking lot down to the "Washington Park" station in the tunnel; when the tunnel was built, that parking lot also served the former site of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, hence it is a "science themed" station. Part of that theme is some digits of pi chisled into the granite all of the eastbound platform.

However, the digits are not successive. The sequence shows "3.", then the first 10 decimal digits completing the first of 7 rows, then 90 digits are missing. After that, it gets wierd. We resume with 10 more digits of pi on the 12 digit line of numerals; the last two digits aren't sequential. They are the next two digits after 90 sequential digits were deleted. The next eight digits in sequence after those two appear on the next line, then 90 more digits are deleted, then ...

If that sounds confusing ... well, it is.

My guess is that the original plan was to carve 1020 numerals of pi (including "3.") into a wide slab of stone. The numerals were originally arranged in 10 rows of 102 numerals each. Then some budget-cutting dork told them they could only afford the first 10 numerals in each row - delete the rest, yielding a 10 wide, 11 row grid. Then another dork decided the table was the wrong shape, so they deleted the last two numerals and rearranged the rest into a 12 wide, 9 row numeral grid ... arbitrarily moving the "invisible" 90 numeral gaps willy-nilly into the middle of this scrambled grid.


MAXpi (last edited 2019-06-13 05:10:24 by KeithLofstrom)