Will was a computer

I want to tell you about William Shanks.

Will was a computer. That’s what people who computed numbers were called before the other computers put them out of business.

He spent 15 years calculating the first 707 digits of π. But he made a mistake on digit 528 in his 11th year on the task, rendering the following four years a tragic waste of time.

There’s no guarantee that if you just put in the effort, everything will work out in the end. Mistakes are common. Sometimes the worst happens. And when it does, it helps to have a well-developed sense of humor.

I sure hope Will did.