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Slicing Pizzas, Racing Turtles, and Further Adventures in Applied Mathematics by Robert B. Banks

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7

A Brief Look at π, e, and Some Other Famous Numbers

The professor went to the board one day And asked his class, just for the fun What is the only conceivable way To combine e, i, π, zero and one?

A brilliant young scholar, he proved quite a hero Who knew the professor just loved to tease Replied: e + 1 = 0Then he requested: the next question, please.

Many years ago, the writer received a magnificent $15 for submitting this poem, which, not long afterward, appeared in the mathematical nursery rhyme corner of a trade journal. Though the poem is pathetic enough, the real misfortune is that space did not allow acknowledgment to the famous Swiss mathematician, Leonhard Euler. In any event, the episode serves as a prologue to our next endeavor: ...

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