Simon Plouffe,  Mathematician

Tel. 514-899-9391           

E-mail: simon.plouffe (AT)



Simon Plouffe is a creative independent mathematician from Montreal who established his reputation at a very young age with his passion for the number Pi. He won international acclaim with his dicovery of the algorithm and formula for the computation of the n'th digit of pi in binary and decimal, to which he devoted the first twenty years of his career. He is the author of two books and many articles. His ability to popularize mathematics through upbeat presentations has made him the subject of several articles and interviews. He has presented conferences internationally in Canada, the United States, France, and Italy. He will be an invited lecturer at the RNC6 (Real Numbers and Computers) conference in Daghstul, Germany, in November 2004 and has been awarded the Prix de Reconnaissance by the University of Quebec at Montreal in April 2004. He is the founder of 3 websites in current use.




Career Highlights                                                                                         

        1975        World record for memorizing Pi (4096 digits), published in the

                        Guiness Book of World Records.


        1987        Discovered the algorithm for the nth binary digit of Plouffes Constant which is arctan(1/2)/Pi.


        1991        Collaborated on development of GFUN package in Maple.

        1993        Discovered Tribonacci numbers equation.


       1995        Published the Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences with Neil Sloane and later the On-line version at


        1995        Established Inverse Symbolic Calculator website:



        1998        Established Plouffes Inverter website:



        2002       Calculated Bernoulli numbers to B(750,000).


        2003       Discovered a new Von-Staudt-Clausen-like equation.




Work History                                                                                       


        Teaching         University of Quebec, Montrealr, winter 2004, EDI basic principles. Informatique théorique, Invited lecture.


                                    Delta College, Montreal, Math 532, winter 2000.


                                    Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Calculus Using Maply V,



                                    University of Bordeaux I, Algebra, 19921993.


                                    University of Quebec at Montreal, tutoring, 19811985, approx.

                                       800 hours : Calculus, Algebra, Number Theory basic courses.


        Business           Senior consultant, data and system administrator, CGI, Montreal.

             and                   Assigned to PSA PeopleSoft and Air Canada.                19982004


                                    Analyst, Hydro Quebec. 2-month project at Siemens, Minneapolis.                                                                                                          1998


                                    Analyst, MicroIntel, Montreal. 4-month feasability study for the digitalization of the National Archives of Quebec.                  1995


                                    Analyst, Air Canada, Montreal. Maintained Human Resources

                                       system in FOCUS.                                                                         1994


                                    Analyst, Hydro Quebec, collection department, Montreal.                                                                                                              19891991


                                    Analyst, Via Rail Canada, engineering and maintenance department.                                                                   19851989



Allouche, J.-P., A. Arnold, J. Berstel, S. Brlek, W. Jockush, S. Plouffe, and B. E. Sagan. A Relative of the Thue-Morse Sequence. Discrete Math, vol. 139 (1995), 455461.

        Bailey, David H., and Simon Plouffe. Recognizing Numerical Constants. Organic Mathematics Project Proceedings (Canadian Mathematical Society), vol. 20 (1997).

        Bailey, David, Peter Borwein, and Simon Plouffe. On the Rapid Computation of

                  Various Polylogarithmic Constants. Mathematics of Computation, vol. 66 (1997), 903917.

        Bailey, David, Jonathan M. Borwein, Peter B. Borwein, and Simon Plouffe. The Quest for Pi. Mathematical Intelligencer (1996).

        Bergeron, François, and Simon Plouffe. Computing the Generating Function of a

                  Series Given Its First Terms. Experimental Mathematics, vol. 1, no. 4 (1992), 307312.

        Pallascio, R., G. Labelle, et al. Mathématiques dhier et daujourdhui. Montreal : Modulo, 2000.

        Plouffe, Simon. Une méthode pour obtenir la fonction génératrice dune série.

                  Proceedings of FPSAC (Formal Power Series and Algebraic Combinatorics),

                  University of Florence, June 2125, 1993.

        ______. The Computation of Certain Numbers Using a Ruler and Compass.

                  Journal of Integer Sequences, vol. 1, article 98.1.3 (1998).

        ______, and Neil Sloane. The Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences. San Diego: Academic Press, 1995).


        Published online by Project Gutenberg:

                 Miscellaneous Mathematical Constants (1996).

                 The First 1000 Euler Numbers (2001).

                 The First 1001 Fibonacci Numbers (2001).

                 The First 498 Bernoulli Numbers (2001).

                 Value of Zeta(3) to 1,000,000 Places (2001).



Conferences and Talks                                                             ____       

 A search for a mathematical expression for mass ratios using a large database, DIMACS-GERAD Workshop on Computers and Discovery, june 2-5 2004.

How to guess a generating function, The long division, University of New Hampshire, Mathematics and Statistics dept. May 5-7 2004.

         Camp Mathématique, UQAM 2004.

 610 million constants, 98500 sequences and 1 table vs the CODATA 2002. University of Quebec at Montreal,  Computer Theory and Combinatorics Seminar, April 2 2004

 Bernoulli Numbers: Sequences and Prime Numbers. University of Quebec at Montreal,  Theoretical Computer Science and Combinatorics Seminar, Feb. 21, 2003.

The Plouffe Inverter. University of Quebec at Montreal, January 14, 2000.

The Nth Binary Digit of Pi. Mathematics Club, University of Québec at Montreal, Feb. 18, 1998.

Number Crunching with the Inverter. Graduate seminar, ISM (Institut des Sciences Mathématiques), Montreal, March 30, 1998.

The 400 Billionth Binary Digit of Pi Is Zero. Communications Security Establishment, Ottawa, July 8, 1997.

The Nth Decimal Digit of Pi. Workshop on Experimental Mathematics, Center for Mathematics Research, University of Montreal, May 29, 1997.

Computer Search of Identities for z and Simple Rational Sums. CECM (Centre for Experimental & Constructive Mathematics), Vancouver, August 22, 1996.

Pi and Transcendantal Numbers. Computer theory seminar, University of Quebec at Montréal, November 14, 1995.

 On the Nth Digit of Transcendental Numbers. CECM, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, October 25, 1995.

How to Guess a Generating Function. Graduate conference, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, May 18, 1995.

Identities Found Using GFUN, and Tables of Real Numbers. University of Québec at Montréal, December 10, 1993.

A New Method for Obtaining the Algebraic Generating Function from a Series. University of Florence, June 22, 1993, and Cornell University, September 24, 1993.

            Generating Functions and Sequences: Maple and the New Handbook of Integer Sequences. Project Algo, INRIA (Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et Automatique), Paris, Feb. 24, 1992.

            Formula for the Nth Tribonacci Number. University of Bordeaux I, April 2, 1993.

Generating Sequences. Quebec Mathematicians Conferences, McGill University, Montreal, October 19, 1991, and Computer Theory Seminar, University of Québec at Montréal, September 19, 1991.

History of Pi. University of Québec at Montréal, Graduate conference, January 23, 1983.

Hypocloids and Congruences. Congress of the Quebec Mathematics Association, Hull, Québec, October 20, 1979.



Articles about My Work                                                                             


A Passion for Pi. Ivars Peterson. MAA online, March 11, 1996.

Pick a Digit, Any Digit. Ivars Peterson. Math Trek, Feb. 28, 1998.  
Obsession de Pi. Jean-Paul Delahaye. Pour la Science, Jan. 1997.
From Numbers to Formula.  Ivars Peterson. MathLand, Nov. 9, 1996.
A question of numbers.  Brian Hayes. American Scientist, Jan-Feb, 1996.
Next in line. Ivars Peterson. MathLand, Nov. 16, 1996.
Certitudes sans démonstration. Jean-Paul Delahaye. Pour La Science, July 1998.
Plouffe's Constant. Steve Finch. mathSoft, online.
Plouffe's Constant. Eric Weisstein. Mathworld (Wolfram Research).

The BBP Algorithm Mathworld (Wolfram Research).

Squaring the Circle is No Piece of Pi. Bruce Watson. Smithsonian, May 2000.



Radio and Television Interviews                                                            

Superseeker and Lookup of the On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences, By Pierre Couture, Radio-Canada, Aug. 19, 1994.

Pi and the CECM. MSNBC, Nov. 1996.

The Inverse Symbolic Calculator, nth Binary Digit of Pi, and Numbers. By Suzanne Marcotte, Radio Canada, January 1996.

The nth Binary Digit of Pi. Les années-lumière, Radio Canada, Nov. 9, 1997.

The Plouffe Inverter. Les années-lumière, Radio Canada, May 24, 1998.

The Fibonacci Numbers and Plants. Television interview at the Montreal Botannical Gardins for the UNESCO International Year of Mathematics, Canal Z,  Feb. 2000.

The History of the Zero. Télévision Quatre Saisons, April  2001.




            M.S., Mathematics, University of Quebec at Montreal, 1992.

            Thesis: Les approximations de séries génératrices et quelques conjectures. The

                     Approximation of Generating Functions and a Few Conjectures.