It was at one time thought to be exactly 1/137
New to me. Who did in fact think this? Do you have any reference? AFAIK α has always been e^2/hbar.c, so why would anyone expect this to be the reciprocal of an integer?
No, Eddington's magic number was 136.
So it would seem that MathTrek is misinformed.
Why is this tibit of information important?
"Interestingly, the number 137, when viewed upside down, resembles the word LEI."
Can anyone supply a citation for 137 as the number of Cabala? I've seen conflicting references to this fact elsewhere on the internet and the Cabala article doesn't clarify. This seems like an important coincidence of mysticism and reality... —Preceding unsigned comment added by 126.96.36.199 (talk) 21:32, 17 April 2008 (UTC)
- A citation is not strictly necessary here, as the relationship may be generated from first principles by anyone, requiring only the Hebrew spelling of Qabalah (Kabbalah) and access to the table of Gematria letter values. I have already added this known fact to the main article. More interesting is the way that Gershom Scholem - late expert in all forms of Jewish Mysticism - was the first to make a connection between the gematria of Kabbalah and the universal Fine Structure Constant, on a visit to the office of Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman.--DStanB (talk) 23:18, 3 March 2013 (UTC)
1/137 has interesting properties- it not only has a repeating portion, but this repeat is itself palindromic, and when aligned against another sequence of 1/137 below or above it, 180 degrees out of synch (or 136/137 aligned along the decimal), the numbers are complements of 9. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 188.8.131.52 (talk) 05:17, 31 May 2011 (UTC)