Pi Calculator - Generates pi value using Monte Carlo method.
Version: 1.2Pi Calculator tries to compute the value of pi by using a random number generator. Given plenty of other methods for calculating pi, this may seem like a very silly way to do it.
Operating System: Mac OS X
However, this program does illustrate a very powerful method that is used often in the sciences when trying to manipulate a problem that is either impossible or very difficult to solve analytically. In this casem a computer's numerical prowess can be a terrific advantage. In this case, the power of random numbers is employed. The algorithm used by Pi Calculator is called the "Monte Carlo method."
Pi Calculator may be most useful in an educational setting. Science and math teachers at the 11th and 12th grade levels, as well as freshmen and sophomore college level instructors should find the topic to be at about the right difficulty level without being too abstract for their students. It may also make a good introduction to numerical computing and the power of computers in science.