# Why is the circle 360 degrees instead of a simpler number

## The origin of the "circle is 360 degrees" setting.

By ApostolakisPublished 12 months ago 4 min read
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If you are asked, how many degrees is a circle? I believe we can all give the correct answer immediately: 360 degrees. But if pressed, why is a circle 360 degrees, rather than a simpler number, such as 100 degrees? It is estimated that some people do not know how they should answer, and do not know it does not matter, the following we will talk about this topic.

On the origin of the setting "circle is 360 degrees" there are a variety of views, one of the relatively high degrees of agreement that this setting should have a close relationship with the "hexadecimal".

Our modern human use is usually a counting and arithmetic system based on 10, every full 10 numbers, to the higher bit, that is, "10 into 1", which is also known as "decimal", so we can simply understand that the so-called "hexadecimal" is a counting and calculation system based on 60, that is, "1 in 60".

The reason why humans use "decimal" should be well understood, after all, humans usually only have 10 fingers to count, it is interesting that researchers believe that "hexadecimal" is probably also related to human fingers, but this way of counting is to count the number of fingers The number of knuckles, how to count it?

Hold out your right hand, then use your left hand to hold out a finger, count the number of knuckles of the four fingers of your right hand except for the thumb, no surprise, you will get the number "12".

On this basis, you then use your left hand to extend two fingers to continue to count knuckles, then you will get the "24" number, and then you use your left hand to extend three, four, and five fingers to continue to count knuckles, then you will eventually get "60" number.

Research shows that the Sumerian civilization first began to use "hexadecimal", and in the ancient Babylonian period, this counting method was widely used. So what is the connection between "hexadecimal" and "circle is 360 degrees"? Let's see.

First, we draw a circle, and then the radius of this circle as the side length, we can draw an equilateral triangle.

At this point, we can find that if we let the center of this circle overlap with one of the vertices of this equilateral triangle, then exactly 6 such equilateral triangles can be put down in this circle.

Such a law applies to any circle, in other words, any circle can put down exactly 6 equilateral triangles of equal radius, since the ancient Babylonians used "hexadecimal", s they considered that the base value of each equilateral triangle is 60, and the 6 equilateral triangles add up to This is the origin of the "circle is 360 degrees" setting.

It should be noted that the above is only a relatively high degree of agreement, in addition, people also put forward a variety of different claims, for example, some people think that the "circle is 360 degrees" setting should be derived from ancient people by observing the sun's movement in the sky, and some people think that this setting should be based on ancient people's view of the sun's diameter and the celestial sphere. Some people think that this setting should be based on the ratio of the sun's apparent diameter to the apparent circumference of the celestial sphere, here we will not explain.

Then the question arises, after the common use of "decimal", why would humans still use the setting of "circle is 360 degrees" instead of using a simpler number, such as 100 degrees? The answer is simple: although the number "100" is relatively simpler, it is not the most suitable natural number for equal division.

When discussing geometric problems related to circles, we usually divide them into equal parts, the most common of which are two equal parts, three equal parts, and four equal parts. If we set the circle to 100 degrees, then it will have such a circular decimal as 33.333 ...... when it is divided into three equal parts, which undoubtedly complicates the problem.

However, if we set the circle to 360 degrees, we can handle it simply because the number can be divided by 2, 3, and 4.

360 is a "highly synthetic number", we can simply understand it as, among all the natural numbers less than or equal to 360, the natural number that can divide 360 is the most, for example, in the range of 1 to 10, except "7 ", 360 can be divisible by any other natural number.

As you can see, this advantage is unmatched by any other natural number less than 360 (including 100). Of course, a "highly synthetic number" larger than 360 (e.g., 720) can be divisible by more natural numbers, but using such a number would complicate the problem on another level by making the value too large The use of such a number would complicate the problem at another level by being too large.

On balance, 360 is not a very large number and can be divided by as many natural numbers as possible, so if we set the circle to 360 degrees, it is easier to discuss geometric problems related to circles, and it is for this reason that the "circle is 360 degrees" setting is commonly used and has been used ever since. It is for this reason that the "circle is 360 degrees" setting is commonly used and has been used to this day.

Well, that's all for today, welcome to follow us, we'll see you next time.

Science
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### Apostolakis

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