Pennsylvania marks 223 years as state with a math rarity
Pennsylvania became a state 223 years ago today, and perhaps no one is more excited than University of Portland professor Aziz S. Inan.
"The date has very rare mathematical properties," said Inan, 55, of Beaverton, Ore., an electrical engineering professor.
Dec. 12, 2010, or 12-12-2010, creates what Inan calls a reverse perfect square — the first of three that will occur in the United States this century. Four happened last century; two in the 1800s.
If you flip around the numerals in the date, you get 01022121. Because numbers don't start with zero, take out the zero. What's left — 1,022,121 — has a square root of 1,011, making it a reverse perfect square. Other dates this century that so qualify are Dec. 14, 2030, and Oct. 20, 2062, Inan said.
Pennsylvania celebrated its 164th anniversary of statehood on another reverse perfect square, Dec. 12, 1951.
Inan said he spent three or four hours mathematically tinkering with today's date; Dec. 12, 1787, the date when Pennsylvania formally signed the U.S. Constitution; and the ensuing 223 years. He found: If you multiply 2 times 2 times 3, you get 12. Today is the 12th day of the 12th month.
"I see myself as a normal person. I have a family, children. I get my sleep," he said.
What, if anything, do Inan's discoveries portend for today?
"I don't see any reason why it won't be a good day, but I don't believe there's any significance to the date other than it has very rare mathematical properties. I'm not a numerologist," Inan said.
Francesca Szarnicki of Leechburg runs NumerologyWizard.com.
"I do think maybe there is significance to the square root thing, but my thing is to do very personal readings," Szarnicki said, with emphasis on the word "maybe."
What stands out about today's date, as far as Pennsylvania is concerned, are the numbers 12 and 23, she said. Twelve is a powerful number, and 23 is "a fabulous number about money."
"Maybe we'll do better financially. I think our 223rd anniversary might bring good luck," Szarnicki said.
That's good news, considering the state faces a projected deficit of $4 billion to $5 billion next year.
Mathematical and cosmic hoopla aside, the governor's office planned no special events for the state's 223rd anniversary.
"I'm wondering how I missed the significance of this anniversary," said Gary Tuma, spokesman for Gov. Ed Rendell.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Consumer, core prices inch up
- Pitt offense eyes healthy balance
- Karns City soccer teams advance
- Starkey: Century mark beckons for Ben
- Flyers continue mastery of Penguins at Consol
- Steelers’ defense on pace for fewest sacks in 16-game season
- Leader Times Q&A: Redbank Valley’s Wyatt Hetrick
- Central Valley girls win 3rd straight PIAA golf title
- Contempt citation sought by state against Highmark for alleged violation of deal with UPMC
- The Leader eager for Kittanning finale
- Roundup: EPA says mileage inflated on 4 Mini Cooper models; Google unveils app for managing Gmail inboxes; more