The infamous problem of representing numbers with four 4’s appeared for the first time in 1881 in a London science journal. In 2001, a team of mathematicians from Harvey Mudd College found that we can even get four 4’s to approximate four notable constants: the number e, π, acceleration of gravity, and Avogadro’s number.
A “Kepler triangle” is a right triangle having edge lengths in a geometric progression, in which the common ratio is √ϕ, where ϕ represents the golden ratio.
Well, let’s construct a square with side length √ϕ that inscribes a Kepler triangle, that is, a right triangle with edges 1 : √ϕ : ϕ (or approximately 1 : 1.272 : 1.618), as shown in the picture. Draw then the circumcircle of the Kepler triangle (highlighted in orange in the picture) whose diameter is the hypotenuse of the triangle.
Then, the perimeters of the square (4√ϕ≈5.0884) and the circle (πϕ≈5.083) coincide up to an error less than 0.1%. From this, we can get the approximation coincidence π≈4/√ϕ