Johann Martin Zacharias Dase

Born: 1824 in Hamburg, Germany
Died: 1861

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Zacharias Dase had incredible calculating skills but little mathematical ability. He gave exhibitions of his calculating powers in Germany, Austria and England. While in Vienna in 1840 he was urged to use his powers for scientific purposes and he discussed projects with Gauss and others.

Dase used his calculating ability to calculate pi to 200 places in 1844. This was published in Crelle's Journal for 1844. Dase also constructed 7 figure log tables and produced a table of factors of all numbers between 7 000 000 and 10 000 000.

Gauss requested that the Hamburg Academy of Sciences allow Dase to devote himself full-time to his mathematical work but, although they agreed to this, Dase died before he was able to do much more work.

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JOC/EFR December 1996