Sunday, March 30, 2008

The First Slice of Pi

I hadn’t seen Pi before so I didn’t know what to expect. So far it’s definitely a story of a crazed mathematician, a theme that seems common in a lot of literature. Hopefully we will find out why authors tend to use mathematicians in this context in our upcoming research projects.

There were a lot of things I like about Pi so far, but the main thing that jumped out at me is that Max was trying to figure out the pattern behind the stock market if there even is one. Individual consumer decisions all around the world affect the stock market so I think by trying to solve its algorithm he is subsequently trying to figure out how the world works.

One of the other things I thought about in my spare time is how the color (black & white) and the music was affecting the way I was seeing the movie. I think the black and white gives the movie some fantastical quality that I don’t think would be the same if it were in color and the electronica gives it a sort of frantic feeling. Also someone (I can’t remember who, sorry) mentioned that his computer crashed because of an ant or spider and thought it could’ve been a metaphor for a computer bug. I wondered if that was done by the film maker on purpose and if so, would there be more in the following portions of the film.

Oh and the Hebrew math thing, with the mother, father, child thing was really interesting. I don’t know anything about Hebrew at all. Does anyone have more information on this? Anyhow, those were some of my initial thoughts on Pi. I’m interested in seeing what happens next.


Ian B said...

I thought it was funny how Max was uninterested in the torah until he realized that it could be represented as an array of numbers. I cant understand a mathematician being so interested in large arrays of numbers like the torah representation or the stock market, or the decimal expansion of pi for that matter. It seems that most mathematicians and especially number theorists try to study the foundation of numbers by putting them under a microscope, so to speak. Max, it seems, is looking at them on the macro level. Seems more like astronomy to me.

Cheney said...

I think the effects of the movie are brilliant. It really sets you on edge and thus on a better level of understanding with Max. Potentially the film is in black and white because Max thinks that everything can be solved, that there are no gray areas like his belief that the stock market can be fit to a pattern. He seems not to have room for any color in his life.