Tuesday, January 27, 2004

First, the facts of the news story. A Tuna-U student just made math history by finding the largest prime number in the history of ever. Said historical number has more than 6.3 million digits and blah de blah lots of facts about how many trees one would have to kill in order to print the dumb thing out. On 1400 sheets of paper. Which, ironically enough (and thank you for asking), is not a prime number.

Now, read the story a little more carefully. If truth be told, the student didn't find the largest prime number in the history of ever. A student's computer found it. More specifically, a student's computer program found it. Said program was downloaded from the Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search homepage. Yes, that's right. It is the homepage for the GIMPS.

Regrettable acronym? Mmmmaybe so.

Juvenile taunting aside, I have a hard time appreciating the true wonder and excitement of this discovery. But, in the interest of higher mathematics and a potential TinyTuna current event for tomorrow (weather permitting), I'll go with the younger, hipper crowd and say Woo! Get out of here with your big prime number bad self, math dude.

Eh. Yeah. Whatever.
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