With training, many of us could walk from Land's End to John O'Groats, trek across the Antarctic, or even climb Everest. Very few of us, however, get mma around to achieving these goals; we are quite happy to watch others, content in the knowledge that of course we could do it too, we just don't want to.
The same could be said about memorizing large numbers. Not many people have the inclination to commit to memory the first 40,000 decimal places of pi, the current world record. The very notion of absorbing so many digits is utterly incomprehensible. And yet, I believe we all have the potential to perform feats of this sort.
This chapter is for those who want to learn how to crunch large numbers. It's also for those who cannot conceive how or why it's done and want to find out. I hope it removes some of the mystique, giving you an insight into what is, in fact, a very ordered and deceptively simple process. By the end of it, you will know how to memorize the first 100 digits of pi, and how to set about tackling bigger numbers.
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