# a serious mathematics question

(Owen) #1

hello everyone I was wondering what your favorite type of number is could you please answer in the poll thanks

#2

On the mobile app I canâ€™t see the poll but I like pi. Iâ€™m not a big math person but when I saw this picture, it made me think and I found it interesting.

Maybe saying irrational numbers would be better to say?

(Owen) #3

it looks like we have a transcendental fan in the house. Iâ€™m more of an e fan myself but pi is a good one too

#4

I donâ€™t have a favorite number. But I do have a favorite formula. It is

(1/2) n (n-1)

It represents so many things in so many different ways.

Imagine connecting computers together in a network such that every computer could connect to every other computer in the network. How many connections is that? The answer is in that formula, simply substitute n for number of computers.

I could go on about that one function

#5

I was a math major in college.

Prime numbers. What are they? What do they represent? â€śPrimalâ€ť valuesâ€¦?

Primes are something we briefly study in 5th grade. They are numbers that are not products of other real numbers (0,1,3,5,7,11,13,17â€¦) But LARGE prime numbers are an intense area of study for cryptology. How can a large number, larger than say a million; be one that is NOT a product of two other numbers. Think about itâ€¦

Why are large prime numbers so valuable to cryptologists? If a prime is not a product of two other lesser-numbers; how do you identify it? Large prime numbers are like numeric islands in the numeric universe. Just identifying the number: 17,425,170 means I have to find it. To do that means: 1+1+1+â€¦ and checking if it is prime until I get a really big one. That is where the â€śIt would take a computer three hundred yearsâ€ť estimate to break a code comes from. The computer has to â€śguessâ€ť the big prime number being used as a key. Finding big prime numbers is a whole branch of mathematics for people with really unique minds.

I have also been fascinated by imaginary numbers. These are numbers where the square = a negative number or: (i * i) < 0. According to modern algebra, (-x) * (-x) > 0. Why?

You would think there is a good answer for that. The real reason (-x) * (-x) = x is that without this being the case, other rules of algebra would not work. It is just that simple. You can find lots of stories about debt and walking backwards to try and explain it. But without (-x)^2 = x; complex math will not work (transitivity specifically). Indeed the proof that (-x)*(-x) = x is proven BECAUSE of the algebraic rule of transitivity. Ie; its the way it is.

Oddly, physics has a great concept of imaginary values. Imaginary time (Ti) is time before the big-bang. So are imaginary values real? â€¦

And yes, I am a Bob Marley fan too.