“Quantitatively, this may be THE biggest error in all of math and physics, since every single physical equation with pi in it must now be thrown out and redone.” — Miles Mathis
The pi=4 theory is the crown jewel of crackpottery. This theory alone has elevated Mathis from an obscure, struggling artist and ballet dancer, to undisputed king of the crackpots.
The theory in its entirety consists of five articles (nearly 40 pages), and one simple diagram:
The gist of the theory basically boils down to this. Draw little stair-steps around the outside of a circle, and then pretend that the curve and the stair-steps are actually one and the same:
“The arc is defined as a curve composed of linear or straight vectors.” — Miles Mathis
So curves are composed of little stair-steps. That’s it. That’s the entire theory in a nutshell. Well that, and other assorted silliness and hogwash.
This theory is without doubt the most outlandish and absurd nonsense that Mathis, or any other crank, has ever produced; this is crackpottery on steroids. The sheer volume of errors in the theory prohibits me from listing them all; there is far too many for that. So here is just a partial list of errors found in this idiotic and perposterous theory:
1) Pi is not a unitless constant, it is an acceleration and has units of (m/s2).
2) Pi has two values: 3.14 and 4 (static and kinematic, respectively).
3) The ‘radius’ is a velocity and has units of (m/s).
4) The circumference is not a length, it has units of (m2/s3).
5) The circumference can have three different values: 4r, 8r, and 2πr.
6) A circle is composed of only straight lines, no curves; stair-steps.
7) Time is “embedded in the curve” and adds to its length.
8) The “short version proof” does not contain a time variable or any motion whatsoever; it is a static geometric proof, not kinematic.
9) The tangent line is never taken to a limit, as claimed; the chord was taken to a limit, not the tangent.
10) The chord is converted into its x and y components, which are then illegally summed together creating a new, longer length.
11) The tangent is substituted into the “short version proof” illegally.
12) Newton monitored the wrong angle in Lemma 6 of the Principia.
13) NASA is hiding information relating to pi — predictably, a conspiracy theory.
Putting aside the myriad mathematical and definitional errors, what ultimately sinks the theory is that pi can readily be determined by directly measuring the circumference and diameter of any circle. Now if pi were to change from 3.14 to 4 based on motion alone, as Mathis contends, then we could easily observe and measure this change. For instance: toggling a phonograph turntable on and off would produce a detectable change (approximately a 27% increase) in the length of the circumference; which doesn’t occur. So the theory is at odds with the data and fails via direct measurement.
“It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is; it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.” — Richard Feynman
Ex Falso (Mathis Watchblog)
Good Math, Bad Math
Sheer Lunacy (Kevin Bos)
Mishmash of Crackpottery (Michael Norris)
Mathis and pi
New Math by Miles Mathis
Miles Mathis Interview
Pure Crackpot (R Dowdall)
The Wisdom of Miles Mathis
FQXi Forum (Steven Oostdijk)
Beyond Parody (Crackpotwatch)
Lack of Imagination and Pi
Alien Anomalies (Joaquin Hermon)
Crackpottery (L Butler)
Miles Mathis Revolution (Facebook)
The Work of Miles Williams Mathis (Facebook)
Something Mathis Missed (Crackpotwatch)
On Trying To See Reality (Thomas Burwell)
Fake Science For Low-Information Conspiracy Believers (Michael Norris)
Note: This paper was last revised on June 4, 2015