My father remembers an old Superman comic in which Lois Lane is kidnapped and her return is conditioned on Superman computing the last digit of pi (you know, 3.1415926535...) Or perhaps this is just to keep him busy. I think in the end he succeeds.

Is this known? Any reference?

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    If he did succeed, would have toppled a lot of Math since Pi is a transcendental number. Infinitely long, no repetition. It has no 'last digit'. Will be interesting to see if anyone knows of such an issue. – Stan Sep 17 '13 at 13:35
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    I've found someone referring to Superman calculating Pi to one trillion digits, but does not cite a reference. – phantom42 Sep 17 '13 at 13:40
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    Hell, Supes could just guess. He's got a 1 in 10 chance, and if he's wrong, how will they know? – Jeff Sep 17 '13 at 22:37
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    @HellothisisMary: That π was irrational was proved on 1761, so that way predates any Superman story. – rodrigo Apr 6 '14 at 22:00
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    @HellothisisMary: Because pi is irrational, it has no "exact value" in a digital representation. Computer scientists in the 1940s were well aware of this. What people have done, and continue to do, is compute pi to as many digits as possible as a kind of stunt to show off the power of computers. As of December 2013, the record appears to be 12.1 trillion digits, but there will never, ever be a "last digit" or "exact representation" of pi. – Royal Canadian Bandit Jun 30 '14 at 9:11

I've found a couple of instances where Superman does maths on a blackboard. Neither of them seem to fit the plotline you've described but I'm hoping it jogs a memory:

Superman V1 - #224 - "Beware the Super-genius Baby"
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The entire comic is set in a fantasy world where Lois and Clark have had a kid. The super-baby is much smarter than he is.

The Computers that Saved Metropolis enter image description here
This was from a set of three comics created in order to market Radio Shack's TRS-80 computers. Superman is targeted with a "dumb-ray" that makes him act like a moron.

  • It's not the answer.. But, I liked the comic stripes.. :) – Baby Yoda Jul 5 '14 at 18:54

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