For questions on continued fractions.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

42
votes
6answers
4k views

Continued fraction fallacy: $1=2$

It's easy to check that for any natural $n$ $$\frac{n+1}{n}=\cfrac{1}{2-\cfrac{n+2}{n+1}}.$$ Now ...
39
votes
1answer
747 views

A new continued fraction for Apéry's constant, $\zeta(3)$?

As a background, Ramanujan also gave a continued fraction for $\zeta(3)$ as $\zeta(3) = 1+\cfrac{1}{u_1+\cfrac{1^3}{1+\cfrac{1^3}{u_2+\cfrac{2^3}{1+\cfrac{2^3}{u_3 + \ddots}}}}}\tag{1}$ where the ...
30
votes
1answer
586 views

How do I calculate the 2nd term of continued fraction for the power tower ${^5}e=e^{e^{e^{e^{e}}}}$

I need to find the 2nd term of continued fraction for the power tower ${^5}e=e^{e^{e^{e^{e}}}}$ ( i.e. $\lfloor\{e^{e^{e^{e^{e}}}}\}^{-1}\rfloor$), or even higher towers. The number is too big to ...
21
votes
1answer
704 views

A continued fraction involving prime numbers

What is the limit of the continued fraction $$\cfrac{1}{2+\cfrac{1}{3+\cfrac{1}{5+\cfrac{1}{7+\cfrac{1}{11+\cfrac{1}{13+\cdots}}}}}}\ ?$$ Is the limit algebraic, or expressible in terms of e or ...
20
votes
1answer
541 views

Direct proof that for a prime $p$ if $p\equiv 1 \bmod 4$ then $l(\sqrt{p})$ is odd.

Definition: Assume $p$ is a prime. $l(\sqrt{p})=$ length of period in simple continued fraction expansion of $\sqrt{p}$. The standard proof of this uses the following: $p$ is a prime implies $p ...
19
votes
1answer
2k views

What was Ramanujan's solution?

The wikipedia entry on Ramanujan contains the following passage: One of his remarkable capabilities was the rapid solution for problems. He was sharing a room with P. C. Mahalanobis who had a ...
19
votes
2answers
607 views

Riemann's zeta as a continued fraction over prime numbers.

Riemann's zeta function is a function with many faces, I mean representations. I recently derived this one, bellow, as a continued fraction over prime numbers. $$ \zeta(s)=1 ...
18
votes
2answers
324 views

Evaluation of a continued fraction

Puzzle question... I know how to solve it, and will post my solution if needed; but those who wish may participate in the spirit of coming up with elegant solutions rather than trying to teach me how ...
16
votes
3answers
934 views

Motivation behind this eccentric Ramanujan Identity

I just visited the MathJaX page due to the Math.SE website showing some problems while loading the page. I saw some demo math equations samples at this page, when this identity actually caught my ...
16
votes
1answer
220 views

An infinite series plus a continued fraction by Ramanujan

Here is a famous problem posed by Ramanujan Show that $$\left(1 + \frac{1}{1\cdot 3} + \frac{1}{1\cdot 3\cdot 5} + \cdots\right) + ...
15
votes
2answers
821 views

Continued fraction for $\frac{1}{e-2}$

A couple of years ago I found the following continued fraction for $\frac1{e-2}$: $$\frac{1}{e-2} = 1+\cfrac1{2 + \cfrac2{3 + \cfrac3{4 + \cfrac4{5 + \cfrac5{6 + \cfrac6{7 + \cfrac7{\cdots}}}}}}}$$ ...
14
votes
2answers
287 views

Solving for $x$: $1=\frac{1}{x}+\frac{1}{1+\frac{1}{x}}+\frac{1}{1+\frac{1}{1+\frac{1}{x}}}+\cdots$

How can I solve for $x$: $$1=\cfrac{1}{x}+\cfrac{1}{1+\cfrac{1}{x}}+\cfrac{1}{1+\cfrac{1}{1+\cfrac{1}{x}}}+\cdots$$ Any clues?
13
votes
2answers
415 views

How to do a very long division: continued fraction for tan

I want to compute $$\tan(r) = \cfrac{r}{1 - \cfrac{r^2}{3 - \cfrac{r^2}{5 - \cfrac{r^2}{7 - {}\ddots}}}}$$ by dividing the power series for sin and cos as it is said can be done in ...
13
votes
1answer
720 views

Arithmetic of continued fractions, does it exist?

I'm interested in the arithmmetic of continued fractions and specially in multiplication. Consider $$ ...
12
votes
1answer
471 views

Deriving a trivial continued fraction for the exponential

Lately, I learned about the following continued fraction for the exponential function: $$\exp(x)=1+\cfrac{x}{1-\cfrac{x/2}{1+x/2-\cfrac{x/3}{1+x/3-\cfrac{x/4}{1+x/4-\dots}}}}$$ I thought it was ...
12
votes
1answer
192 views

Request for a proof of the following continued-fraction identity

I have been poring over many texts about continued fractions, but none of them seem to be helping me to prove the following beautiful continued-fraction identity (I am nowhere close): $$ ...
12
votes
1answer
360 views

How to prove this determinant is $\pi$?

prove or disprove $$\pi=\begin{vmatrix} 3&1&0&0&0&\cdots\\ -1&6&1&0&0&\cdots\\ 0&-1&\dfrac{6}{3^2}&1&0&\cdots\\ ...
12
votes
1answer
151 views

Evaluation of a slow continued fraction

Puzzle question... I know how to solve it, and will post my solution if needed; but those who wish may participate in the spirit of coming up with elegant solutions rather than trying to teach me how ...
11
votes
5answers
423 views

What's the value of $n+\cfrac{n}{n+\cfrac{n}{n+\cfrac{n}{\vdots}}}$ for $n\in\mathbb{C}$?

Write $$\phi_n\stackrel{(1)}{=}n+\cfrac{n}{n+\cfrac{n}{\vdots}}$$ so that $\phi_n=n+\frac{n}{\phi_n},$ which gives $\phi_n=\frac{n\pm\sqrt{n^2+4n}}{2}.$ We know $\phi_1=\phi$, the Golden Ratio, so ...
11
votes
3answers
446 views

Closed form for a pair of continued fractions

What is $1+\cfrac{1}{2+\cfrac{1}{3+\cfrac{1}{4+\cdots}}}$ ? What is $1+\cfrac{2}{1+\cfrac{3}{1+\cdots}}$ ? It does bear some resemblance to the continued fraction for $e$, which is ...
10
votes
4answers
733 views

Solve $\dfrac{1}{1+\frac{1}{1+\ddots}}$

I'm currently a high school junior enrolling in AP Calculus, I found this website that's full of "math geeks" and I hope you can give me some clues on how to solve this problem. I'm pretty desperate ...
10
votes
3answers
845 views

Proving the continued fraction representation of $\sqrt{2}$

There's a question in Spivak's Calculus (I don't happen to have the question number in front of me in the 2nd Edition, it's Chapter 21, Problem 7) that develops the concept of continued fraction, ...
10
votes
1answer
559 views

Continued Fraction expansion of $tan(1)$

Prove that continued fraction of $\tan(1)=[1;1,1,3,1,5,1,7,1,9,1,11,...]$. I tried using the same sort of trick used for finding continued fractions of quadratic irrationals and trying to find a ...
10
votes
1answer
424 views

A strange “pattern” in the continued fraction convergents of pi?

From the simple continued fraction of $\pi$, one gets the convergents, $$p_n = \frac{3}{1}, \frac{22}{7}, \frac{333}{106}, \frac{355}{113}, \frac{103993}{33102}, \frac{104348}{33215}, ...
10
votes
2answers
889 views

How do I prove the partial denominators formula of the Bauer-Muir transformation of a generalized continued fraction?

Notation: $b_{0}+\underset{n=1}{\overset{\infty }{\mathbb{K}}}\left( a_{n}/b_{n}\right) $ is the Gauss Notation for generalized continued fractions. Description of the Bauer-Muir transformation ...
9
votes
3answers
297 views

Value of $f'(0)$ if $f(x)=\frac{x}{1+\frac{x}{1+\frac{x}{1+\ddots}}}$

Consider the function $$f(x)=\cfrac{x}{1+\cfrac{x}{1+\cfrac{x}{1+\ddots}}} $$ Determine the value of $f'(0)$. I tried to differentiate $f(x)$ but it is not subject to chain rule, and now I'm stuck. ...
9
votes
3answers
165 views

Generalizations of $\sum_{m=3n+2}^{\infty}\phi^m=\phi^{3n}$ and $\sum_{m=13n+1}^{\infty}(\sqrt2-1)^m=\dfrac{(\sqrt2-1)^{13n}}{\sqrt2}$

I noticed that the following identies hold with the help of wolfram alpha and oeis. I'm sure they're well-known, but I'd like to know how they generalize. ...
9
votes
1answer
191 views

Minimum of $|az_x-bz_y|$

I am trying to minimize the following function: \begin{align} &f(z_x,z_y)=|az_x-bz_y| \\ &\text{ s.t. } z_x,z_y \in \mathbb{Z},1 \le z_x \le N_x \text{ and } 1 \le z_y \le N_y \text{ and } ...
9
votes
0answers
162 views

Continued fraction with prime reciprocal entries

We know that the reciprocals of the primes form a divergent series. We also know that a necessary and sufficient condition for a continued fraction to converge is that its entries diverge as a series. ...
8
votes
3answers
272 views

Continued fractions for $\sqrt{x} $ and beyond, valid formula?

For $x > 0$, is this trick valid? I use $$ ( \sqrt{x}-1)(\sqrt{x}+1)=x-1 $$ then $$ \sqrt{x}+1 = \frac{x-1}{\sqrt{x}+1-2} $$ so I can use iterations to get the rational approximant $$ \sqrt{x} ...
8
votes
3answers
715 views

Why are some mathematical constants irrational by their continued fraction while others aren't?

Catalan's Constant and quite a few other mathematical constants are known to have an infinite continued fraction (see the bottom of that webpage). On wikipedia (I'm sorry, I can't post anymore ...
8
votes
2answers
125 views

Reference for relation between class number of $\Bbb Q[\sqrt{-p}]$ and partial quotients of $\sqrt p$

So in Ireland and Rosen's, "Classical Introduction to Modern Number Theory", they mention the following incredible fact at the end of Chapter 13, section 1. Suppose $p \neq 3$ and $p \equiv 3 \pmod 4$ ...
8
votes
1answer
155 views

optimality of 2 in a continued fraction theorem

I'm giving some lectures on continued fractions to high school and college students, and I discussed the standard theorem that, for a real number $\alpha$ and integers $p$ and $q$ with $q \not= 0$, if ...
8
votes
1answer
95 views

Do best lower approximations of a quadratic irrational always form a linear recurrence sequence?

Let $\theta$ be an irrational number and let $$ {\cal L}= \bigg\lbrace (a,b) \in {\mathbb Z} \times {\mathbb N}^{*} \bigg| \frac{a}{b} \leq \theta \bigg\rbrace $$ and $$ {\cal B}= \bigg\lbrace ...
7
votes
5answers
711 views

Is π unusually close to 7920/2521?

EDIT: One can look at a particular type of approximation to $\pi$ based on comparing radians to degrees. If you try to approximate $\pi$ by fractions of the form $180n/(360k+1)$, you can find that ...
7
votes
5answers
399 views

How are continued fractions useful?

On Wolfram Alpha, I see continued fractions being listed in the results. Although I understand continued fractions, and how they can be used for approximations, what is a better approximation than a ...
7
votes
4answers
603 views

How to detect when continued fractions period terminates

I'm doing continued fractions arithmetic. Is there a method to detect when a continued fractions period terminates? Let me give you an example: $\sqrt{2} = [1; \overline{2}]$, $\sqrt{7} = [2; ...
7
votes
2answers
271 views

Continued fractions

I'd really love with concluding that for given integers $a_0,a_1,...a_N$ with $a_i>0$ for $i>0$, representing the continued fraction $[a_0; a_1,....,a_N]$, with the following recursion: ...
7
votes
1answer
128 views

Is this a misuse of the word “evaluate”?

I have found the following use of the word "evaluate" in several math books: "To evaluate the continued fraction, start at the bottom and work your way up:" $\huge \underbrace{2 + ...
7
votes
1answer
93 views

On the Pell-like $Ax^2-By^2 = 1$

This is connected to the post, Mere coincidence? (prime factors). I was looking at NeuroFuzzy's dataset and noticed the line, {{{1, {4, 2}}, {1, 4, 2, 4, 2}, 23762}} It seems this could be ...
7
votes
1answer
238 views

What causes the convergence of Iterated continued fractions from convergents?

Here is a small discovery I stumbled across a few weeks ago. I hope at least one person will find it interesting enough to help me. The iterated continued fractions from convergents (or convergents ...
7
votes
1answer
328 views

Eigenvalues of a tridiagonal trigonometric matrix

Let $A$ be the diagonal matrix w/alternating in sign diagonal entries: $$ A = \begin{pmatrix} (-1)^{n-1} \tan\left(\frac{\pi}{2n+1}\right) & 0 & 0 & \ldots & 0 \\ 0 & ...
7
votes
0answers
154 views

Continued fraction and double series.

From Euler's continued fraction formula, we have $$x = \cfrac{1}{1 - \cfrac{r_1}{1 + r_1 - \cfrac{r_2}{1 + r_2 - \cfrac{r_3}{1 + r_3 - \ddots}}}}\,$$ and $$x = 1 + \sum_{i=1}^\infty r_1r_2\cdots r_i = ...
7
votes
1answer
206 views

Chinese estimate for $\pi$. Were they lucky?

The famous chinese estimate $\pi\approx\frac{355}{113}$ is good. I think that is too good. As a continued fraction: $$\pi=[3:7,15,1,292,\ldots]$$ That $292$ is a bit too big. Is there a reason for a ...
7
votes
0answers
84 views

Properties of a continued fraction convolution operation

Usually the partial numerators of a continued fraction are all 1s. Has anyone considered the operation where you convolve 1 continued fraction with another, in other words, make a new continued ...
7
votes
0answers
450 views

What can Euler's identity teach us about (generalised) continued fractions?

We know that $$e^{i \pi} = -1 .$$ We can transform all of the components of this identity into (generalized) continued fractions. When we start of with $\pi$, we see that $$ \Big(3+ ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Approximating $\arctan x$ for large $|x|$

I would like to know if there is reasonably fast converging method for computing large arguments of arctan. Until now I've came across Taylor series that converges only on interval $(-1,1)$ and for ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

How to find continued fraction of pi

I have always been amazed by the continued fractions for $\pi$. For example some continued fractions for pi are: $\pi=[3:7,15,1,292,.....]$ and many others given here. Similarly some nice continued ...
6
votes
3answers
290 views

Where did the negative answer come from in the continued fraction $1+\frac{1}{1+1/(1+\dots)}$?

In this question we increased solution domain by squaring both sides of equation but what about this one ? Here the question is to evaluate ...
6
votes
2answers
115 views

Continued fractions help

I'm trying to learn how to express a square root as continued fraction, but I can't get one thing. The following example of $\sqrt{14}$ is from this page (click the image to see it at full size): ...