Pi calculated to 5 Trillionth Digit

August 6, 2010, By Radimir Bobev

Alexander Yee and Shigeru Kondo have yesterday announced that they’ve successfully managed to calculate Pi to its five trillionth digit, setting a new world record. The entire number took 6 TB of storage space to contain, and in case you’re wondering what the final digit that the computer spat out was, it’s 2.

The computer used to calculate Pi’s value was built by Kondo on a $18,000 budget, with the help of Yee who currently studies computer science and wrote the software to do the job – a multi-threaded program, y-cruncher. The entire calculation was done in just 90 days.

According to the two though, there was another goal behind the project – testing to see how much hardware you can cram into a single computer and still improve its productivity. The result in their case was a 2 x Intel Xeon X5680 @ 3.33 GHz for processing (a total of 12 cores which doubles to 24 with hyperthreading), 96 GB of DDR3 RAm running at 1066 MHz, and a total of 19 hard drives for storage, with the smallest one being 1 TB – and that was just the boot drive. The OS the program ran on was Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise x64.

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