1. Meet pi, everyone’s favorite infinite, non-repeating, irrational number.
2. It’s the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, and no one’s ever discovered a pattern within its digits, nor an end to them.
That’s important, that it’s infinite and patternless. Keep it in mind in a moment.
3. Meet binary, a two-symbol number system that kicks pi up a notch.
It can be a bit confusing if you’ve never heard of a “base-10” number system (it’s the one you and the rest of the world uses), and that’s alright. What you need to know about it is that binary code — all the ones and zeroes you see on hackers’ screens in movies like The Matrix — is how computers make sense of everything.
4. Literally anything a computer knows about anything, it knows because it read it in binary.
Everything it knows, everything it does, everything it is commanded to do, is because that computer read it in binary code.
Despite its utter simplicity, binary code can be used to represent absolutely any scenario that is logically possible to a computer. And a computer with enough firepower could simulate anything binary threw at it.
So absolutely any situation that has ever happened, or will ever happen, or logically could happen but for whatever reason never did or never will, can be represented in a string of binary code.
5. Now think back to our infinite, patternless friend, Pi.
Remember how no pattern or end to it has ever been discovered?
6. If that’s true…
Then somewhere within pi’s infinite depths of numbers is hidden any string of numbers you can conceive of.
…like, let’s say the string of binary that represents you sitting at your computer, reading this article right now. Feed that code into a powerful enough computer, and it could simulate exactly that, down to the atom.
7. Or the string of binary that represents you playing Frisbee with your son.
8. Or the same situation, but with a red Frisbee instead of a blue one.
9. The entirety of Barack Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign exists, as binary code, within pi.
10. As does the alternate reality in which Mitt Romney won.
11. Your career as an astronaut, your life with the dog you’ve always wanted, and your retirement as a billionaire all exist as binary code within pi.
Hell, all at the same time, even.
12. And given a powerful enough computer (or holodeck), these realities could all be made real.
As well as literally any other logically possible thing you can conceive of.
13. So when you have some pi pie at today’s office pie party, remember…
…you are virtually eating everything.