SXSW Day 4: There’ll Be Pi in the Sky…Or Something Like That

When I walked outside the Four Season Hotel, I saw people staring into the sky, and soon I could see why. A plane, or more precisely, a group of planes, were skywriting strings of numbers. It didn’t make a lot of sense to me at first, but my initial thought was that it was some form of advertising. After all, at SXSW, one is bombarded with advertising, marketing and popular culture. But there were too many numbers for it to be a phone number, and if it were promoting something, I couldn’t figure out what. Eventually, at the end of a string of numbers, they wrote #PiintheSky, and I realized that the numbers were part of the famous mathmatical PI, 3.14 and so on. Pi is a non-repeating decimal, so it goes on forever after the decimal. As for why the planes were hired to skywrite all of that over downtown Austin, I still wasn’t sure, but it did occur to me that the next day was March 14, equivalent to 3.14.

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