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Troy Ashby Memorises 20,000 Digits To Make Bermuda 8th In World Pi Memorisation


Bermuda College Maths Lecturer Troy Ashby has smashed his previous Pi memorisation record by successfully memorising 20-thousand digits behind the infinite number, putting Bermuda 8th in the Pi world ranking for countries, and 15th in the Pi world ranking for individuals.

The incredible feat was accomplished in just over 24 hours, when Mr. Ashby began writing the numbers on Tuesday, July 20 at 7:30 a.m., finishing at approximately 8:30 a.m., working straight through the entire day, and refusing to sleep or nap.

The entire event was recorded continuously, and adjudicated by a coordinated cadre of 14 volunteers. The official assessment awarded him 99+% accuracy.

Mr. Ashby began memorising the Pi digits in 2014, when a maths colleague, Frances Furbert, returned from an overseas maths conference, and shared what others were doing in honour of Pi day, March 14.

“I thought it was very interesting, and decided to try it myself. I invited the math faculty at the College to a demonstration and wrote 1000 digits. It just went from there,” he said.

In 2019, he had accomplished 12-thousand, and aimed for 20-thousand for Pi Day in 2021. As with so many things, Covid intervened and he was forced to postpone the demonstration in accordance with Covid and College health and safety regulations, until this month.

“I believe everyone has the potential to do what I’m doing,” he said. “People hear about it and think they would never be able to do it. I disagree. If you’ve never tried it, how can you know if you can do it or not? If I can do it; others can, too.

He thanked in particular, Ms. Algene Maybury who coordinated the event and volunteers, and M. Jamel Darrell, who provided security – both of whom stayed up throughout the night to support him.