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You Can Remember Much More Than You Think

How Much Pi?
By Founder Of Gloo, Chris Lyons

People do some strange things.

Many years ago as a child I heard on the news about a man in the US who memorised the entire set of New York telephone directories.

How bizarre.

Talking of strange facts, did you know that...

  • Plants can suffer from jet lag
  • The screwdriver was invented before the screw
  • You're 66 times more likely to be prosecuted in the US than in France
  • The earth is not round but slightly pear-shaped
  • Saunas outnumber cars in Finland
  • Natural gas has no odour - the smell is added artificially so that leaks can be detected

Useless info - all taken from my official favourite Christmas present 'The Best Book Of Useless Information Ever' by Noel Botham.

But when it comes to pointless stuff memorising 'Pi' takes the biscuit.

Now for those of you who weren't exactly riveted by algebra and equations at school, let me refresh your memory.

Pi is the ratio of the circumference to the diameter of a circle.

Of course you knew that.

You probably also know that this mathematical marvel begins 3.141592 and commands much fascination in certain circles as it is believed to be infinite - at last count a Tokyo professor had calculated its value to 1.24 trillion places.

And as there are no recurring patterns in the number, being able to recite Pi from memory is considered by many to be the Ultimate Test of Memory.

So it was that on a Sunday in January I found myself locked in a room for 2.5 hours at The Mind Sports Australia Festival and forced to recite Pi.

How did I go?

The answer... in a moment.

But first so you can get a feel of just how pointless this is have a go yourself. Here's a few digits to get you started...

141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375105820974944 592307816406286208998628034825342117067982148086513282306647 093844609550582231725359408128481117450284102701938521105559 644622948954930381964428810975665933446128475648233786783165 271201909145648566923460348610454326648213393607260249141273 724587006606315588174881520920962829254091715364367892590360 011330530548820466521384146951941511609433057270365759591953 092186117381932611793105118548074462379962749567351885752724 891227938183011949129833673362440656643086021394946395224737 190702179860943702770539217176293176752384674818467669405132 000568127145263560827785771342757789609173637178721468440901 224953430146549585371050792279689258923542019956112129021960 864034418159813629774771309960518707211349999998372978049951 059731732816096318595024459455346908302642522308253344685035 261931188171010003137838752886587533208381420617177669147303 598253490428755468731159562863882353787593751957781857780532 171226806613001927876611195909216420198938095257201065485863 278865936153381827968230301952035301852968995773622599413891 249721775283479131515574857242454150695950829533116861727855 889075098381754637464939319255060400927701671139009848824012 858361603563707660104710181942955596198946767837449448255379 774726847104047534646208046684259069491293313677028989152104 752162056966024058038150193511253382430035587640247496473263 914199272604269922796782354781636009341721641219924586315030 286182974555706749838505494588586926995690927210797509302955 321165344987202755960236480665499119881834797753566369807426 542527862551818417574672890977772793800081647060016145249192 173217214772350141441973568548161361157352552133475741849468 438523323907394143334547762416862518983569485562099219222184 272550254256887671790494601653466804988627232791786085784383 827967976681454100953883786360950680064225125205117392984896 084128488626945604241965285022210661186306744278622039194945 047123713786960956364371917287467764657573962413890865832645 995813390478027590099465764078951269468398352595709825822620 522489407726719478268482601476990902640136394437455305068203 496252451749399651431429809190659250937221696461515709858387 410597885959772975498930161753928468138268683868942774155991 855925245953959431049972524680845987273644695848653836736222 626099124608051243884390451244136549762780797715691435997700 129616089441694868555848406353422072225828488648158456028506 016842739452267467678895252138522549954666727823986456596116 354886230577456498035593634568174324112515076069479451096596 094025228879710893145669136867228748940560101503308617928680 920874760917824938589009714909675985261365549781893129784821 682998948722658804857564014270477555132379641451523746234364 542858444795265867821051141354735739523113427166102135969536 231442952484937187110145765403590279934403742007310578539062 198387447808478489683321445713868751943506430218453191048481 005370614680674919278191197939952061419663428754440643745123 718192179998391015919561814675142691239748940907186494231961 567945208095146550225231603881930142093762137855956638937787 083039069792077346722182562599661501421503068038447734549202 605414665925201497442850732518666002132434088190710486331734 649651453905796268561005508106658796998163574736384052571459 102897064140110971206280439039759515677157700420337869936007 230558763176359421873125147120532928191826186125867321579198 414848829164470609575270695722091756711672291098169091528017 350671274858322287183520935396572512108357915136988209144421 006751033467110314126711136990865851639831501970165151168517 143765761835155650884909989859982387345528331635507647918535 893226185489632132933089857064204675259070915481416549859461 637180270981994309924488957571282890592323326097299712084433 573265489382391193259746366730583604142813883032038249037589 852437441702913276561809377344403070746921120191302033038019 762110110044929321516084244485963766983895228684783123552658 213144957685726243344189303968642624341077322697802807318915 441101044682325271621052652272111660396366557309254711055785 376346682065310989652691862056476931257058635662018558100729 360659876486117910453348850346113657686753249441668039626579 787718556084552965412665408530614344431858676975145661406800 700237877659134401712749470420562230538994561314071127000407 854733269939081454664645880797270826683063432858785698305235 808933065757406795457163775254202114955761581400250126228594

Ok more than just a few.

The first 4,400 in fact, which coincidentally is the number I recited in order without error.

The result?

A new Australian Memory Record, doubling the previous record of 2,189 (hence the reason for stopping at a mere 4,400).

Since achieving this apparently pointless feat I've been repeatedly asked 2 very salient questions -

'How?' quickly followed by 'Why?' often accompanied by a strange look on the face of the person asking.

How did I do it? - I used a combination of imagination and simple memory techniques.

Why did I do it? - in a word... PUBLICITY.

The Pi Record attempt was done to help promote the inaugural Mind Sports Australia festival a week long event which included competitions in mental sports such as chess, poker, scrabble and of course memory.

And get publicity it certainly did... prime-time TV and over a dozen radio interviews in two days alone.

Not bad for doing something useless!

So why am I telling you this?

Because there's another much more serious point which is this...

If it is possible to memorise useless, meaningless, seemingly impossible stuff like the first 4,400 places of Pi...

...then YOU can use the same techniques in your everyday life to remember names, presentations, facts, figures, sales information - in fact anything you want to boost your success at work, at school or in your personal life.

If you then combine memory with speed reading and other techniques that's when you start saving yourself heaps of time and giving yourself a real Hidden Advantage.

So if you're serious about getting ahead and achieving more this year, then join us at The Hidden Advantage Workshop.

The Final Word: Memory is a skill that you can learn and profit from whatever your age. And too much Pi is bad for you!

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Or if you're ready to get started, take a look at how we can help you with Memory , Speed Reading or Study Skills.

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