
Re: prime numbers and African artifact
David L Burkhead (r3dlb1@dax.cc.uakron.edu)
7 Jul 1995 21:37:38 GMT
In article <1995Jul7.191856.23484@vtf.idx.com> rsf@mother.idx.com (Rob Freundlich) writes:
>In article <5JUL199517392971@almach.caltech.edu>,
> shoppa@almach.caltech.edu (Timothy D. Shoppa) wrote:
>>In article <DB8qqE.3uI@undergrad.math.uwaterloo.ca>,
>shallit@graceland.uwaterloo.ca (Jeffrey Shallit) writes...
>>> "A piece of bone found in Africa and dated at around 8,500 B.C.
>>>has engraved markings containing what appear to be representations of
>>>the numbers 11, 13, 17, and 19, all of which are prime numbers ..."
>>>
>>What? They left out 9, 15, and 21, some of the most useful prime numbers
>>of all! :^)
>
>No, no, no. Those are the *even* numbers! The primes are 1, 4, 9, 16, 25,
>36, etc.
*Is there a mathematician in the house???*
Well, I'm not a mathematician, but as a Physicist in Training
(Undergraduate senior), I sometimes play one on Usenet. ;)
In basic terms a prime number is a positive integer, excluding
one, that can only be evenly (no fractions or remainders) divided by
itself and one. The first few primes are: 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, 13, 19,
23, and so on.
For those who care: it is known that the number of primes is
infinite and there is no largest prime number (which are, I think,
just different ways of saying the same thing).
David L. Burkhead
r3dlb1@dax.cc.uakron.edu
d.burkhead@genie.geis.com

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