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Talk:Two largest known prime numbers discovered just two weeks apart, one qualifies for $100k prize

Well, all Mersenne primes are primes, and most of the big ones found these days are Mersenne primes for various reasons. I think a little note like "Prime numbers have many applications in number theory, and are also used in computer encryption algorithms" to give some context of why they search for big primes (although of course the real reason is "because we can"). Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 23:30, 17 September 2008 (UTC)


clarificationEdit

I believe I made a mistake while editing the article. I incorrectly thought that Tom Duell, Rob Giltrap, Tony Reix and Jeff Gilchrist each verified both primes, meaning that both number were checked four times.

However, from what I've been told, each number was only checked three times:

  • Duell and Giltrap each checked one of the numbers
  • Reix checked both numbers
  • Gilchrist checked both numbers

I guess this is a moot point because the article never said there were four verifications; it merely stated that four members of GIMPS' verification team were involved.

I'm just posting this as an FYI. --Ixfd64 (talk) 19:13, 20 September 2008 (UTC)

Suggestion for more correct/clearer wordingEdit

This paragraph (from the 25 Jan. 2015 version) is not really saying what it should, in my opinion:

A prime number is a positive integer that can be evenly divided only by 1 and itself. For example, 2, 3 and 11 are prime numbers. 21 is not a prime number because it is a product of 3 and 7. These types of prime numbers are called Mersenne primes, which can be expressed as one less than a power of two. Mersenne primes are rare, and only 46 are known up to now. The first few Mersenne primes are 3, 7, 31, 127 and 8191.

I propose changing it into this:

A prime number is a positive integer that is divisible only by 1 and itself. To illustrate: 21 is not a prime number because it is a product of 3 and 7. The numbers 2, 3, 5, 7 and 11 are the first five prime numbers. A special kind of prime numbers are so-called Mersenne primes, which can be expressed as one less than a power of two. The first five Mersenne primes are 3, 7, 31, 127 and 8191. Mersenne primes are much rarer than regular prime numbers—only 46 are known up to now—but because of their regular sequence they are of special interest when searching for extremely large prime numbers.

--Geke (talk) 11:18, 7 July 2015 (UTC)

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