Did everyone hear about the fight to stop using pi and start using tau? No? Seriously? Every June 28th for the last 10 years, there has been a call to stop using Pi in favor of using Tau. Granted, the call is from a small rogue band of mathematicians and physicist, but the call makes it to national news outlets. (Think yahoo news and NPR, not CBS nightly..) There is no argument against the value of Pi or the important role it plays in the circle, the argument is that Pi isn’t very useful in most of the calculations we need to do with circles. Tau is no mystery number; it is equal to 2 π. So, for example, when teaching students about radians, you could say a ½ circle= ½Tau radians. There’s more parity. Yeah, yeah…I get it, but seriously, do we need to upset the apple cart here? No.
Why Not? Because there is no humor in Tau. Right now, there is a dearth of math humor for the middle school set; we need to keep the giggles going here. On March 14th of every year (Pi day…) middle schoolers everywhere bake pies in the shape of Pi. What would they do for Tau day? (Not that they are in school at that time….) Would they make towels in the shape of Tau? Boooo-ring. What about the t-shirt business?